Crime

Laura Flanders, Who Was So "Dazed" She Drank Nail Polish Before Fatally Running Over Peoria High Schooler, Gets Prison Time

The woman who told police she was so "dazed" that she drank nail polish before fatally running over an 18-year-old Peoria high school student in 2010 was sentenced today to six years in prison.

Joey Romero was walking home from his job at the 99 Cent Store near 83rd Avenue and Thunderbird Road in October 2010, when a car jumped the curb and hit him, before the driver sped away.

Peoria police had an idea that then 23-year-old Laura Flanders was the driver since the day after Romero was killed -- chalking it up to tips from the community -- and police impounded her Chevy Trailblazer shortly after that.

According to court documents previously obtained by New Times, Flanders was on an unspecified prescription medication that came with instructions to not drive.

"Laura was not coherent to her actions by her complete disregard to proper medications and not to drive while under the medications," the documents said.

Flanders told police she thought she had hit a pole or a bush, so she drove away, and said she didn't even remember where she'd hit this object, which was actually Romero.

She also told police that she was so out of it from her medication that earlier that night, she drank nail polish, before she realized what it was and spit it out.

"I was too dazed," Flanders told police, per a probable-cause statement. "I probably should not have been driving."

As part of a plea deal, Flanders was sentenced to six years in prison and three years of probation for negligent homicide and leaving the scene of an accident.

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Matthew Hendley
Contact: Matthew Hendley