Local News

Orange County Magistrate Charged With DWI

Posted December 29, 2007
Updated December 30, 2007

— A magistrate for the Orange County Court system was charged with DWI Saturday after police observed her driving on the wrong side of the road.

Jennifer Allen Hay, 44, was pulled over by Chapel Hill police on Hillsborough Street. She registered a .09 on her Breathalyzer, which is just above the legal limit.

“Ms. Hay was arrested for driving while impaired, driving left of center and failure to change the address on drivers license within 60 days,” the report stated. “Based on her poor operation of the vehicle and roadside test, she was arrested and transported to [the Chapel Hill Police Department].”

Hay’s trial date is set for Feb. 5.


This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • nc3mom Dec 31, 2007

    "Isn't this ironic. . . a town well-known for DWI arrests, pulls over one of its own court officers. . ."

    Issy, is this suppose to be a bad thing? I'm no fan of Chapel Hill, but if they make a lot of DWI arrests then there must be a lot of drunk drivers. Police don't make people drink and drive, put the responsibility where it belongs. Drunk driving is serious, people get killed.

  • blessalah Dec 31, 2007

    She looks like she knows how to party. And I agree that most people in Chapel Hill are quite "left of center"

  • Offshore Dec 31, 2007

    What's with pulling her out of her job? She should face the same penalties as anyone else. But lose her job, give me a break. No one cared when Barry Bonds was smashing home runs on steroids, he sets a bigger example in the public eye then a local court magistrate. Too many knee jerk responses to this issue. Step back, remove the fact that she is a magistrate. If she was working on an assembly line or as a waitress, you wouldn't even hear of this case in the news.

  • carlostheass Dec 30, 2007

    C'mon, isn't everyone in Chapel Hill a little "left of center"?

  • mike honcho Dec 30, 2007

    At a .04 I wouldn't dream of getting behind the wheel of a car.
    which at 200 lbs. takes about a six pack on an empty stomach.
    Just to put things in perspective.In my opinion .08 is too high, impairment sets in for some at half that. An alcohlic is a different story, they show signs of impairment at a higher rate due to their tolerance.

  • myrtlebeachrock Dec 30, 2007

    If she wanted to drink she could have gotten a room at the Travel Inn on 501 for $35.00 and took a cab for a few bucks. That's not using good judgement. She could have killed innocent people.

    I'm going out in Greenville tomorrow night and I'm getting a room at the motel 6 for 40 bucks and taking a cab to the bar. There is no excuse for using plain common sense.

  • CSMs Alter Ego Dec 30, 2007

    "Last,BAC numbers are not a good indicator of ability to drive since a guy can blow a .12 and be able to walk a straight line and drive a car without breaking traffic laws"

    I've never seen anyone blow a .12 and not show signs of noticeable impairment. No way anyone should drive at a .12

  • LoneWolf72 Dec 30, 2007

    First time offender loses license for 30 days, after trial or plea, automatic one year suspension and jail time, usually suspended sentence in exchange for community service and traffic school or counseling alomng with unsupervised probation...those are all minimums in NC for first offenders...but since she was driving on the wrong side of the road, that's an aggrevating circumstance and so her level of DUI (1 thru 5 with 5 being the least severe) may be higher even though her BAC was low and so her community service hours, months or years of probabtion may be higher or the judge may deny her a court issued limited driving privelege which would allow her to drive for work purposes, community service or counesling.
    Last,BAC numbers are not a good indicator of ability to drive since a guy can blow a .12 and be able to walk a straight line and drive a car without breaking traffic laws but she blows a .09 due to body weight and many other factors, cannot safey operate a vehicle.

  • Go Georgia Tech Dec 30, 2007

    The only thing different between her and a majority of the public service community is ---- she was caught.. I have several friends that are in law enforcement, elected positions, and even employed by the church- that I deal with that will drink a few beers/wine with dinner and walk right out the door to their cars... so she is not alone in this plight...

  • daisy Dec 30, 2007

    Her duties as a Magistrate don't require her to drive a vehicle like the jobs you mentioned...trooper and school bus driver. I don't know if she could be fired since she wasn't intoxicated on the job. But there might be a clause stating that you can't hold that position if you have been convicted of a crime. It wouldnt surprise me to see her resign, which would probably be the right thing to do in this situation.