Woman arrested after car drives into Minden business | NevadaAppeal.com

Woman arrested after car drives into Minden business

Kurt Hildebrand
The Record-Courier
Cheryl Smith's Pontiac Grand Am inside Northern Nevada Gold an Coin on Thursday night.
Douglas County Sheriff’s Office |

A woman arrested after she drove through the wall of a Minden coin shop told deputies she’d only had one drink.

Driver Cheryl Kaye Smith, 74, and a male passenger were in a handicapped spot in the parking lot shared by Saletti’s restaurant and Northern Nevada Coin around 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

The Pontiac Grand Am backed into a Honda parked in front of Saletti’s and then witnesses said pulled forward in an “aggressive manner” and accelerated into the side of the coin store. Smith allegedly backed up and struck the coin store wall a second time and then punched through the building’s brick wall and into the shop.

In a video of the incident from the store’s security cameras, employees can be seen scrambling over counters to get out of the way of the white Pontiac. One employee is seen carrying a gun, but didn’t leave the store.

First reports were that there was a man with a gun at the scene, but it was determined to be the man, whose Honda was struck. He told deputies that while he had the firearm on his hip, he never removed it from its holster.

Sheriff’s spokesman Sgt. Pat Brooks said there were six employees in the building.

Deputies and firefighters were able to clear the way for employees so they could escape. Upon contact, Smith reportedly told a deputy that she’d only had one vodka, and that she knew she was going to jail.

Both Smith and her passenger were freed from the vehicle. Smith was taken for medical examination before being booked on charges of driving under the influence, assault with a deadly weapon and felony destruction of property.

Smith was released after family members posted $31,509 bail on Friday morning. No hearing date was available on Friday.

A Douglas County building inspector responded to the business, located at 1621 Highway 395, and deemed the structure unsound.