Driver admits taking shots, Xanax before plowing into home - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Driver admits taking shots, Xanax before plowing into home

Reporter Juan Carlos Fanjul

An out of control driver plows into a Port Saint Lucie home, and it appears a diaper change may have saved the life of a baby inside. The driver went through a stop sign near Del Rio Boulevard, a tree and right into the girl's room.

"This is where the car came in," said Tammy Huttemeyer who is still shaken up by the damage. Her house literally shaken up, as well. Cracks on the wall show how the house shifted after an out of control driver plowed into the side of the dwelling.

What gives her pause is 6-month-old Gabriella. She was supposed to be in a crib in the room at the time of the accident, but, instead, Tammy decided to change her diaper. At that exact moment, she heard an unexpected thunderous sound, a room away. "I grabbed her up, heard a loud bang thinking it was the original accident. Then, I ran down the hallway and heard another loud bang, and the whole house vibrated," said Huttemeyer.

The driver captured on police dashcam video is John Paul Newman. He admitted to cops he had just done seven shots of whisky and snorted Xanax, medication used to treat moderate to severe anxiety disorders or panic attacks. "The guy was in a total daze; the guy was very confused," noted Huttemeyer who confronted the driver after the accident.

Making matters worse, Newman had a female passenger in the vehicle and her 7-year-old Autistic son. They didn't have serious injuries.

Tammy is just thankful a diaper change ended up saving the little girl's life: "Thank God," she said.

Newman is being held on $12,000 bond for D.U.I., child neglect and destruction of property charges. His passengers, including the 7-year-old boy, were wearing seatbelts.

D.C.F. is investigating that part of the case.

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