By Nancy Drury Duncan –
Elisse Marie Fitzgerald, 48, of Bloxom, pleaded guilty to DUI, second offense within five years, assault and battery, and driving on a revoked license, all misdemeanors, in a plea agreement with the commonwealth. She was originally charged with felony DUI, assault and battery of a police officer, and obstruction of justice.
On Sept. 24, 2020, in the middle of the afternoon, Fitzgerald was driving with a blood alcohol level of .11 when she struck a mailbox and returned home, said Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney William Fox.
When police arrived, Fitzgerald admitted the Chevrolet Tahoe with frontend damage, parked in the driveway of her home, was hers. She told the officer she went to town to buy cigarettes and returned home. She admitted she had recently been drinking beer, Fox said. She did poorly on a field sobriety test and the officer offered a breath test. When she refused, he arrested her and charged her with DUI.
Inside the police car, she kicked the windshield, yelled insults at the officer and attempted to spit on him. After she was taken to the Accomack County Sheriff’s Office, “She kicked the officer and bit at him, ‘but did not make contact with flesh,’” said Fox.
She spent time in jail and apologized to the officer, said defense attorney Laurie Nieldm, who said Fitzgerald has been attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and had complied with all the requirements imposed by Community Corrections. According to the terms of the plea agreement and the code of Virginia, Judge W. Revell Lewis III sentenced her to 12 months in jail for the DUI, second offense in five years, with all but time served suspended. She is required to pay a mandatory minimum fine of $500. Her operator’s license will be revoked for three years. For assault and battery, she was sentenced to 12 months, with all but time served suspended. For driving on a revoked license, she was sentenced to three months, all suspended but time served. “You were before court on some very serious charges,” said the judge. “You have gotten your life in order. Good.”