A Flagler County mother is facing charges after deputies say she drove recklessly, hit a truck and took off — all with a toddler in the back seat.

  • Palm Coast woman charged with DUI, child neglect
  • Deputies say Crystal Ferreira crashed, drove off with child in car
  • Witnesses followed her for miles after the crash, they said

Crystal Lynn Ferreira of Palm Coast was arrested Friday evening on charges of leaving the scene of an accident, DUI and child neglect.

Witnesses called 911 to report that a driver described as "swerving all over the place" had been involved in a crash on Palm Coast Parkway and drove off.

"Oh my gosh, she hit the truck, she just hit the truck... She’s driving away," a 911 caller is heard telling a dispatcher.

The witnesses followed the car, turn-by-turn, for miles, reporting that the female motorist was driving dangerously with a child in the car.

Witnesses said the woman's car almost hit several other vehicles before she was caught as she continued making stops at a few stores and restaurant parking lots.

During a traffic stop, Ferreira was captured on a deputy's body camera taking the field sobriety tests. In an arrest affidavit, deputies said Ferreira struggled, and they said a Breathalyzer test said she was almost three times over the legal limit.

"She's a 31-year-old mother; obviously, she should know better," Sheriff Rick Staly said. "She was driving around intoxicated, highly intoxicated."

On the phone, Ferreira said she was just distracted while driving, and when she hit the truck, she kept going to get her car out of the road.

Luckily neither the driver of the truck nor the toddler in her car, who was in a child safety seat, was hurt.

"She was so impaired, she kept saying she was trying to get home and she was nowhere near her home," Staly said.

Staly said this is a great example of "see something, say something," because the witnesses potentially stopped someone from being killed.

"We're just very fortunate that she didn't seriously hurt or kill someone," Staly said.

Crystal Lynn Ferreira (Flagler County Sheriff's Office)