METAIRIE, La. - A Kenner man was arrested on a slew of charges after he allegedly hit multiple vehicles and a pedestrian while driving drunk, led authorities on a chase, broke into a home, and injured an officer.
Royd Anderson had just pulled into his friends’ Metairie driveway to drop her off after Sunday’s St. Joseph’s Day Parade, when he heard a loud crash.
“Just a loud crash boom, like a car, screeching metal, I said ‘Wow, something really bad, I think an accident just happened,’” said Anderson.
Seconds later, a black 1995 Honda Prelude turned from Division Street onto the 3700 block of Rockford Heights, where Anderson and his friend had just parked, said authorities.
The Honda slammed into Anderson’s Mustang, then hit Anderson’s friend while she stood in her own driveway around 3:30 Sunday afternoon. She asked that her name not be used.
“Seeing her hit the ground and seeing him speed off like that, it was just, it was a nightmare,” said Anderson. “I couldn't believe someone would just leave a human being like that on the street to die.”
Broken glass still littered the driveway Monday evening, and Anderson’s friend remained hospitalized with severe injuries.
In all, 23 year old Charles West Jr. hit three vehicles and a pedestrian, said Col. John Fortunato, a spokesman for the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office.
Shortly after, a deputy on patrol spotted West asleep behind the wheel in the 4600 block of Richland Avenue, about a mile from the crash site, said Fortunato. West was transported to the nearby 1st district sheriff's station for a sobriety test, but authorities say he escaped, leading deputies on a chase to an apartment complex behind the sheriff's station, in the 4200 block of Division Street.
“A man answered the door with his child in his hands and the suspect just pushed him away and went and hid in the bathroom,” said Fortunato.
Deputies say West put up a fight when they caught up with him. He's now in jail on a slew of charges, including battery of a police officer with injuries, DWI, resisting police using force or violence, unauthorized entry of a inhabit dwelling, simple escape, reckless operation of a vehicle, and hit and run.
Our partners at the New Orleans Advocate report West's blood alcohol level was nearly 3 times the legal driving limit of .08.
“The message here is people shouldn't drink and drive. We have these safety campaigns all the time, we have sobriety checkpoints all the time,” said Fortunato.
The sheriff's office said the victim's injuries are not life threatening.
Anderson said his friend has a long road to recovery and he hopes justice is swift.