HAVERHILL — Police have charged a Methuen woman with assault to murder and other offenses after she allegedly drove her Jeep toward an employee of a downtown lounge then crashed into the building before driving away and crashing into a parked pickup truck on nearby Wingate Street, causing a chain reaction of damages.
Police charged Cassandra Cabrera, 24, of 20 Washington St., Methuen, with multiple offenses including assault to murder, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, reckless operation of a motor vehicle, leaving the scene of property damage and personal injury, and malicious destruction of property in excess of $1,200. Only minor injuries were reported, police said.
Police said Cabrera was driving a 2014 Jeep Wrangler when at approximately 11 p.m. on Aug. 25 she drove her Jeep toward an employee of Moonshiners Lounge, who was standing outside the 103 Washington St. country-themed bar and grille.
Police said Cabrera was involved in two confrontations earlier that night and that the initial crash resulted in significant damages to the lounge, damages to a city fire hydrant and minor injuries to a patron of the lounge.
Cabrera then drove the wrong way on one-way Wingate Street, where she crashed into a parked pickup truck, causing it to crash into other parked vehicles, police said.
Judge Cesar Archilla ordered Cabrera held without bail pending a dangerousness hearing scheduled. Archilla also ordered Cabrera to have no contact with any witnesses or victims.
In his report on the incident, Officer Mark Andrukaitis said he was on patrol near the downtown train station when he heard tires screeching from a distance and what sounded like a car crash.
He said he drove east on Washington Street and saw a grey Jeep Wrangler heading towards Washington Square, without its headlights on.
He said that as he passed Moonshiners, he heard screams of help and notified dispatch to send assistance.
He said he came upon the Jeep, which had crashed into the front of a red Chevy Silverado, which was pushed into the front of a black Silverado, which in turn was pushed into the front of a Kia Stinger, resulting in damages to all of the vehicles involved.
Cabrera, who was standing next to her car, told Andrukaitis that she was suffering from a panic attack and that she was on medication for anxiety and PTSD, the report said.
“Due to the hysterical crying and her staying seated on the curb, I was unable to observe obvious signs of impairment,” he wrote in his report.
Cabrera was transported to Holy Family Hospital in Haverhill after complaining of pain in her left arm.
The manager of Moonshiners told police Cabrera had been in the bar with a friend about 20 minutes prior to the crash, appeared to be intoxicated and after she picked a fight with another patron, he escorted both of them out of the bar.
The manager said Cabrera then got into the passenger seat of the Jeep and her friend got in the driver’s seat and they drove off, the report said.
About 20 minutes later, Cabrera returned alone, the manager said, but this time she was driving the Jeep and that after making a u-turn in Railroad Square, she accelerated in his direction. He said he jumped out of the way and the Jeep crashed into the front of Moonshiners, causing debris to strike patrons, then Cabrera drove east on Washington Street, the report said.
A patron of the bar told police that he was outside Moonshiners having a cigarette when Cabrera’s Jeep clipped his leg causing minor scrapes and bruises.
Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact Andrukaitis at 978-373-1212, ext. 1214.