An Oakland military veteran who has been battling alcoholism and has a history of calling 911 frequently for help remained in jail Monday after crashing and destroying her new car Saturday, breaking a utility pole and knocking out power to the area for hours, according to police.

Roxane Marie Montgomery, 47, of Hussey Hill Road, was not injured in the accident, but was arrested for operating under the influence and violating conditions of release, Oakland police Officer Todd Burbank said.

Montgomery was taken to Inland Hospital in Waterville after the crash and later to Kennebec County jail in Augusta. It will be a felony OUI because she has two priors, Burbank said Monday. She was also summoned for violating conditions of release.

It’s not Montgomery’s first brush with local law enforcement. In a Morning Sentinel story Friday, Montgomery discussed her recent history of alcohol-related arrests and 911 calls and said her alcoholism was precipitated by sexual trauma from being raped by American soldiers while she served in the U.S. Army in the mid-1990s, an attack that has been confirmed by the Army.

She has been in and out of veterans’ rehabilitation programs, sees a psychiatrist and gets support from VA Healthcare Systems-Togus, but hasn’t been able to stay sober, she said.

On Friday, the day before the accident, Montgomery called 911 from her home, reporting she needed to go to the hospital. Then on Saturday at 9:29 a.m., she called 911 again and asked to be taken to the hospital because she had had too much to drink, according to the police report.

Montgomery appeared Monday in Kennebec County Superior Court via video conference from the jail. Bail was set at $3,000 cash plus a mandatory pretrial contract at the recommendation of District Attorney Maeghan Maloney.

If Montgomery makes bail she will be under supervision, similar to probation, where someone will check on her regularly and can call her in to be tested for drugs or alcohol, Maloney said Monday. If she makes bail, she may not use or possess alcohol or illegal drugs and must abide by a curfew where she may not be out from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m., she said.

Montgomery’s next court date is Jan. 27, when a judge will be updated on her status and she could plead guilty or not guilty to the OUI charge, Maloney said. If she pleads not guilty, the case would go to trial.

“I’m going to offer she enter veterans court in addition to spending some time in custody,” Maloney said. “It’s serious. An OUI is something that does affect the safety of the community, particularly when it’s a third OUI.”

Veterans court is a voluntary, out-of-custody program similar to drug court or a co-occurring disorders court where participants go before a judge every week and engage in stringent individual and group mental health and substance abuse treatment programs, according to Maloney.

They must go to school, do community service or work at a job.

Veterans take part in the program in a group and are acknowledged for their service, but must take responsibility for their crimes, according to Maloney.

“The number one importance is community safety, so if there’s ever any concern that someone is being a threat to the community, bail can be revoked,” she said.

Maloney said she thinks the best scenario is one that combines a period in custody with veterans court.

“That can only happen if she wants that to happen because veterans court is a voluntary program,” she said.

A class C felony carries punishment of up to five years in jail and a maximum fine of $5,000.

At 2:05 p.m. Saturday, Montgomery was driving a 2014 Nissan Juke north on Oak Street when the crash occurred, Burbank said.

“The road started to bend and I think she kept going straight,” he said. “She was traveling from Oakland toward Fairfield. She hit a telephone pole and the pole actually had a transformer on top of it, and that was almost broken and it was leaning over toward her vehicle, above it.

“We emergency workers didn’t get to her for about 30 minutes until (Central Maine Power Co.) could shut the power off,” he said.

He said Montgomery complained of back pain at first, but she has a chronic back condition. Delta Ambulance took her to the Waterville hospital and Burbank followed the ambulance there, he said.

“She tried to leave, actually — she wanted to leave,” he said. “She actually walked out of her room a few times in the ER. She was probably there about an hour. We took a blood sample. We placed her under arrest with $3,000 bail — $2,000 for the felony OUI and $1,000 for violation of condition of release.”

He said he believes the new car Montgomery was driving was destroyed in the accident. Montgomery said in last week’s interview that she had just bought a new vehicle.

Burbank said Montgomery was fortunate to have survived Saturday’s accident.

“She was very lucky that the transformer didn’t come down on top of her, that no one else got injured, that she didn’t hit a house or anything like that,” he said.

The crash occurred between two houses, one of which was damaged, he said.

“We believe there was internal electrical damage to a house at 455 Oak St.,” he said. “People lost power in that area for hours.”

Burbank said it was obvious Montgomery had been drinking.

“She was just visibly intoxicated. She had her pants on backward,” he said. “It is a very sad case and I don’t think she’s a bad person. She just has some problems and we’re hoping she gets help.”

Montgomery has been arrested many times in the past for OUI, violating conditions of release and misuse of 911.

Montgomery was convicted of OUI in both 2011 and 2012.

Police, Maloney, Kennebec County Sheriff Randall Liberty and others are familiar with her case and have been trying to get her the help that she needs, while at the same time trying to ensure that her conduct stops.

Last week, police and emergency workers dealt with her several times.

Montgomery said last week that she is on a waiting list to enter a veterans substance abuse treatment program in Brockton, Mass., a program she has attended twice before.

Maloney said Monday that provisions allow for her to be transferred from the jail to the program if she is called to do so.

“At any time the case can be resolved through both sides coming to an agreement,” she said. “If that happened, she’d have an earlier court date.”

Montgomery served in the Army from 1992 to 1996 and worked in tactical satellite communications in Saudi Arabia during the Persian Gulf War. While serving there, she was raped by at least two soldiers. She reported the rape, but the military police and her commanding officer told her it was her fault because she went to the gym where she was raped alone.

After she returned to Maine many years later, she sought benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs and started to talk about the rape. It was then that she began drinking seriously, she said.

She is on 100 percent military-related disability for the sexual trauma she experienced while in the armed forces and receives just under $3,000 a month in compensation, she said.

Amy Calder — 861-9247

[email protected]

Twitter: @AmyCalder17


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