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Woman pleads not guilty to DWI with kids charge

Mary Kimbrough, 64, enters Suffolk County Court is

Mary Kimbrough, 64, enters Suffolk County Court is in Riverhead for her arraignment on drunken driving and child endangerment charges. Kimbrough was pulled over with two young children in her vehicle on Aug. 24. (Sept. 20, 2012) Credit: James Carbone

A Wyandanch woman pleaded not guilty Thursday to charges she drove drunk with two frightened children in the car.

Mary Kimbrough, 64, was indicted Sept. 6 on charges that include two counts of child endangerment and four counts of aggravated driving while intoxicated with a child in the car, also known as Leandra's Law.

Kimbrough was heading north on Commack Road near Motor Parkway Aug. 24 when a Fourth Precinct patrol sergeant heard a loud noise coming from the woman's 2004 Honda and saw a child crying in the front passenger seat, according to court records. The sergeant pulled Kimbrough over and discovered her left front tire was missing and that she'd been driving on the metal rim, court records said.

Kimbrough told the sergeant she was taking her 11-year-old granddaughter and the girl's 9-year-old female cousin to get their nails done, police said.

The kids were scared and the 11-year-old had used a cellphone to call her mother for help before the vehicle was stopped, according to records. The children were turned over to a relative.

Kimbrough, who was convicted of DWI in 2008, is free on $40,000 bond.

Her lawyer, Monte Malik Chandler of Brooklyn, said she is receiving treatment for alcohol and substance abuse at a Phoenix House rehabilitation center.

"She's taking responsibility for her issues," Chandler said.

Kimbrough is due back in court Oct. 29.


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