Two Burrillville men arrested following DUI crashes with injuries

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BURRILLVILLE – Two Burrillville men were arrested in one week in separate drunk driving incidents that resulted in crashes – and injuries to occupants of the vehicles.

Michael Martinelli, 54, of Mapleville, was charged with driving under the influence and resisting arrest following the first incident on Monday, Jan. 18.

According to the arrest report, officers responded to Cooper Hill Road for an accident and a caller’s description of someone yelling.

There, they found a woman sitting on the side of the road with a head injury and “excessive bleeding,” who turned out to be the driver’s wife. A witness reported that the vehicle involved – which seemed to have a muffler malfunction – had driven by several times before pulling into a house on Hillside Drive.

Police found the vehicle and noted extensive damage to the front, rear and passenger side, a cracked windshield and a “large amount of blood,” on the both the interior and exterior.

Martinelli was reportedly sitting behind the steering wheel of the stopped vehicle, and “highly intoxicated,” according to officers, but said he was not driving.

The injured woman told police she was the passenger in the vehicle, and that they were returning home from Woonsocket.

Martinelli was determined unfit to drive, and reportedly tried to pull away from officers as they placed him under arrest. Officers later discovered he was a probation violator from a previous felony assault out of Woonsocket.

Martinelli was received a one year suspended sentence with one year probation, community service, court costs and loss of his license.

In a separate incident in the early morning on Saturday, Jan. 23, police charged David Arsenault, 47, of Harrisville with driving under the influence and resisting arrest.

According to Arsenault’s arrest narrative, police responded to Brook Road for reports of a crash between a single vehicle and a utility pole. As they arrived, a black Dodge truck at the scene attempted to pull away, but officers used a cruiser to block it. The vehicle reportedly had heavy front damage, and police saw plastic in the roadway, and damage to nearby wall and utility pole.

Arsenault told police he was injured, but declined medical treatment. He had slurred speech and difficulty standing, and told officers he had “just a couple beers… awhile ago,” according to reports.

A witness told police he saw the driver drinking after the crash.

Arsenault initially refused sobriety testing, and became irate as police placed him under arrest, “flailing arms in anger,” according to reports. He was forced into cuffs while resisting arrest. Police noted that they had to read him his rights four times because he kept interrupting.

At the station later, Arsenault took a breathalyzer test and blew .13 and a .123.

Arsenault has a pre-arraignment conference scheduled for Tuesday, March 23.

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