Mom charged in drive-thru incident faces additional charges

By Tanya Mitchell | Feb 28, 2014
Source: File image Deanna Lenfest

Belfast — A local mother who incurred several charges after an incident at a credit union drive-thru Saturday, Feb. 22, has incurred additional charges after police completed the investigation of the alleged series of events.

In addition to the charges of disorderly conduct, criminal mischief, driving to endanger and refusing to submit to arrest or detention she incurred directly after the incident, 34-year-old Deanna Lenfest of Belfast is also facing charges of endangering the welfare of a child and reckless conduct with a dangerous weapon.

Belfast Detective Sgt. Bryan Cunningham said the child endangerment charge is due to the fact that Lenfest had her young child in the vehicle with her during her alleged activities. The reckless conduct charge stems from when Lenfest allegedly drove into a police cruiser intentionally just as Officer Eric Kelley was in the process of walking around her vehicle. Lenfest then drove away from the scene, but police caught up to her a short time later and placed her under arrest.

The matter has also since been referred to the Department of Health and Human Services, Cunningham said.

Police reported that the incident involving Lenfest occurred just after 9 a.m. at Downeast Credit Union on Lincolnville Avenue.

Cunningham said on Saturdays, business transactions at the credit union are limited to those that can be conducted at the drive-thru window.

As several other vehicles waited in line at the drive-thru, Cunningham said witnesses at the scene stated Lenfest could be heard yelling from her vehicle about how the bank employees were too slow and demanding they hurry up. At one point Lenfest reportedly exited her 1999 Chevrolet Cavalier, walked past the waiting vehicles and approached the drive-thru window to confront the credit union staff.

"It got so bad [the employees] had to turn the speaker off," said Cunningham.

Lenfest then returned to her vehicle and started honking the horn while she continued to express her dissatisfaction.

At that time, Kelley arrived at the credit union, located Lenfest and instructed her to meet him on the front side of the bank so they could discuss what had happened. Belfast officer Mike Rolerson said Kelley and Lenfest then "had words," after which Kelley walked around to the passengers side of Lenfest's car. Lenfest reportedly made an additional comment to Kelley as he was walking past the passengers side and toward the front of her vehicle, and as Kelley placed his hand on the hood of the car, Lenfest rammed into the cruiser and left the scene. Cunningham said police believe Lenfest drove into the cruiser intentionally.

Rolerson said Kelley was not injured as a result of the incident, nor was Lenfest or her young child, who was secured in a safety seat. The cruiser, a 2013 Ford Caprice, sustained minor damage to the front end.

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