A second driver in the fatal wreck that took the life of a Warrick County teenager has been charged with driving under the influence.

Whitney Winstead, 20 of Boonville, was arrested last week for the charge of driving under the influence when her blood was found to contain traces of a schedule I or II substance after the wreck that claimed the life of 15-year-old Skylar Robonson-Williamson. Winstead has since been released on bond. The charge for operating while under the influence is a class C misdemeanor in the state of Indiana.

Winstead was the driver of the passenger vehicle that was struck by the SUV of Osiel Marroquin after he was driving the wrong way on S.R. 62 west of Chandler on Dec. 17. A second passenger, 18-year-old Megan Ripperdan, remains in the hospital in and out of consciousness after being in a coma as a result of the wreck.

According to a probable cause affidavit, Winstead first denied being under the influence but later admitted to smoking marijuana hours before the incident. Later, an officer found an empty baggy and cigarillos in the car.

Marroquin has been charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated endangering a person, causing serious bodily injury when operating a motor vehicle with an ACE of .08 or more, causing death when operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, causing death when operating a motor vehicle with an ACE of .08 or more, reckless homicide and operating a vehicle while intoxicated with a prior conviction. The charge of OWI with a prior is a level 4 felony while the remaining charges fall as level 5 felonies. Marroquin returns to court Tuesday after a preliminary hearing last week.

Warrick County Prosecutor Mike Perry said Winstead's blood wasn't drawn due to suspicion, but due to an Indiana statute requiring all drivers involved in such wrecks to be blood tested regardless of the circumstances. He said she will unlikely face any other charges in the case.

"We charged her with the level of crimes we thought she was directly responsible for," he said. "Based on our investigation, we believe she was operating her vehicle in a safe manor on the appropriate side of the highway.

Wyatt Squires is a staff writer for The Standard. Before coming to Warrick, Wyatt has worked as a reporter in Jackson, Greene and Knox counties in Indiana.

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