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Euless mother arrested on DWI charges in crash

EULESS -- A Euless mother was arrested Thursday night on suspicion of drunken driving in connection with a traffic accident last month that injured eight teenagers after she had picked them up from the movies.

Police identified the woman as Brenda Rodgers, 37, who was in the Euless city Jail Friday morning with bail set at $75,000.

Rodgers is expected to be charged with DWI with a child and endangering a child, Euless Police Lt. John Williams said Friday morning.

If convicted, Rodgers faces a maximum of two years in prison and a $10,000 fine on each charge.

Police arrested Rodgers about 9:45 p.m. Thursday at her Euless home.

Blood alcohol tests showed that Rogers had a level 0.13 at the time of Oct. 25 accident, Williams said. The legal limit in Texas is 0.08. The accident happened on Rodgers' birthday.

Included among the injured teens was Rodgers' daughter, according to reports.

Rodgers, two boys and six girls were transported to hospitals in Irving and Grapevine after the crash, police said.

The crash: The accident happened shortly before 10:30 p.m. on Oct. 25 in the 1200 block of Donley Drive. The Euless woman had picked up the teens after a movie at Northeast Mall in Hurst, police said.

She was driving a 2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer southbound on Donley Drive when she swerved to miss a dog, she told police. According to police reports, witnesses said that she swerved to avoid a parked vehicle.

The Trailblazer hit a curb, breaking a wheel and causing the SUV to roll over several times, police said.

Injured: The two boys and six girls were taken to hospitals in Irving and Grapevine, but there were no life-threatening injures.

Three of the teens are 14 years old and five teens are 15 years old, according to police reports.

What the teens say: The eight teens were out to celebrate the twin girls' 15th birthdays, which was the next day, said Gauge Murphy, one of the girls' boyfriends. At about 10 p.m., one of the twins called their mother for a ride home, Murphy said. Rodgers sounded like she'd been drinking, but told her daughters she'd only had three beers, Murphy said in a telephone interview last week.

"We thought she was OK," Murphy said.

But soon after they crowded into Rodgers' Trailblazer, the teens realized they'd made a mistake, Murphy said. Rodgers nearly hit two people in the parking lot, and only tapped the brakes at stop signs, he said. "We all started putting on our seat belts, I was the only one without a belt where I was sitting," said Murphy, who was sitting between two girls in the back seat, according to the police report.

Once on the highway, Rodgers weaved through traffic at speeds up to 95 mph, Murphy said. As she neared home, Rodgers "laughed hysterically" trying to run over a cat and was "playing chicken" with a parked car when she lost control of the SUV, he said. He said police told him the SUV rolled eight times after hitting a curb.

"Everyone tells you not to get in a car with a drunk driver," Murphy said. "They never tell you not to get in a car with your friend's drunk mom. You don't expect to have to deal with that."