The teenage driver who was arrested after fatally hitting a woman near a St. Paul intersection admitted to police that she smoked marijuana earlier that day, according to a newly filed search warrant affidavit.
Abigail Cortes, 18, was driving an SUV west on W. 7th Street about 8:10 p.m. Friday when she ran over a pedestrian at Homer Street, according to police.
The victim, Kevelyn Nicole Hopkins, 37, of St. Paul was taken to Regions Hospital, where she died, police said.
Police are trying to determine "where the pedestrian was or what she was doing when she was struck," Sgt. Mike Ernster said.
Ernster went on to say that police remain uncertain whether Hopkins "was crossing at all," as they initially believed.
Cortes was booked into jail on suspicion of criminal vehicular operation and released Sunday. That count will most likely rise to criminal vehicular homicide should charges be filed.
A police statement said that Cortes was "under the influence of a controlled substance" when she hit the woman but didn't say whether that substance was alcohol or an illicit drug.
According to the affidavit seeking permission to test Cortez's blood:
Police responding to the scene saw Hopkins was semiconscious and had a leg severed among numerous other injuries.
An emotionally shaken Cortes remained nearby. The officer noted that Cortes' eyes were bloodshot and watery, and she acknowledged smoking marijuana about 9 hours earlier.
A field sobriety test came back negative for alcohol. She gave police a blood sample 2 hours after the crash for testing for any drugs in her system.
Neither Cortes nor a 17-year-old in the SUV with her was injured in the collision, police said.