Officer charged with driving under influence in fatal accident

Published: Friday, January 24, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, January 24, 2003 at 12:52 a.m.

LAKE CITY - An off-duty police officer involved in a fatal November accident has been charged with driving under the influence.

Misty Mechelle Gable, 37, had a blood alcohol reading of 0.132 at the time of the crash, well above Florida's legal limit of 0.08, according to Florida Highway Patrol reports.

The charge was filed Wednesday, said Lt. Mike Burroughs, a spokesman for FHP's Troop B. Gable has been an officer with the Lake City police department since 2001.

Police said the Nov. 10 accident occurred on U.S. 41 when Gable and a friend, Anthony Cericola of Daytona Beach, collided while driving their motorcycles.

Gable was leading Cericola when she slowed down to turn into a parking lot. Apparently unaware Gable slowed down, Cericola collided with Gable's motorcycle, police said.

Cericola and Gable were each thrown from their motorcycles. Cericola landed in the road and was struck by a Ford Explorer, whose driver left the scene of the accident. That driver, Kelly McKeithen of Wellborn, was eventually found and has been charged with leaving the scene of a crash involving serious injury or death.

Cericola, who was not wearing a helmet, died of head injuries which were apparently not caused by McKeithen, Burroughs said. The Explorer ran over Cericola's legs.

Lake City police Capt. Gary Laxton said Gable was placed on administrative reassignment at the police resource center following the accident. Officials have not determined how the DUI charge will affect her employment status.

Gable faces a $500 fine and six months in jail. There was no answer at her home telephone number Thursday.

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