BRATTLEBORO -- A Guilford woman pleaded not guilty Monday to charges she assaulted her sister and drove under the influence of alcohol with her 3-year-old child in the car.
Jill Morse, 40, is facing up to nearly five years behind bars for five misdemeanors including domestic assault, disorderly conduct, two counts of unlawful mischief and her second charge of DUI.
When Morse was arrested on June 22, she was initially cited for also assaulting a police officer, resisting arrest and child cruelty.
It’s unclear at this time if additional charges will be filed against her.
According to the affidavit, at about 6:30 p.m., Morse drove to her sister’s house in Vernon, while she was heavily intoxicated, and punched through a glass window.
Morse said she needed to run some errands so her sister offered to drive her and the child.
En route, Morse began swearing at the woman, calling her names and then "poured milk from the child’s bottle on her head and attempted to exit the vehicle with the child," the affidavit states.
Vernon Police Officer Matthew Stains stated he was dispatched to Basin Road at about 9:22 p.m., for a report of a domestic assault. Near the intersection of Basin Road and Huckle Hill Road, Stains said he saw Morse holding the hand of a small child.
When Stains approached Morse, she began yelling and swearing at him, slurring her speech and wobbling back and fourth.
Once the child was with its father, Morse quickly became aggressive, especially when Stains attempted to put handcuffs on her.
At one point Morse pulled down a bar that was attached to the roof of the police cruiser and laid her neck across it, choking herself.
As Stains reached to take the metal bar, Morse wedged herself between the door and the car and Stains had to wrestle her to the ground.
"I commanded her to stop resisting and to place her right arm behind her back, to which she refused and continued to struggle," Stains wrote in the affidavit.
Morse freed her arm and swung at Officer Stains, but he was able to avoid the blow and quickly grabbed his pepper spray and delivered a short burst to Morse’s eyes, nose and mouth.
Two members of the Vermont State Police arrived to assist Stains and Morse was taken to Brattleboro Memorial Hospital to be treated for pepper spray contamination and was released.
While at the Brattleboro Barracks for the VSP, Morse was processed for DUI and a breath sample revealed her blood alcohol content to be 0.163, more than two times the legal limit.
Morse was released on conditions Monday.