Former Marblehead state Rep. Doug Petersen, who most recently served as commissioner of the state's Department of Agricultural Resources, denied a charge of drunk driving in court Monday.
Petersen, 63, of 29 Rose Ave., Marblehead, pleaded innocent in Lynn District Court to a charge of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. He was cited for failure to keep right of a median.
According to police, at 8:17 p.m., local officers responded to the intersection of Brookhouse Drive and Tedesco Street for a report of a high-speed motor vehicle crash.
A witness, who was reportedly walking her dog on Tedesco Street at the time of the accident, told police that she saw Petersen's gray BMW "fly by her and lose control...as it was turning right onto Brookhouse Drive."
The woman also told police that when she went to see if Petersen was injured, she could smell alcohol on him. Police determined the accident was caused by "high speed and impairment," according to court documents.
Petersen's vehicle sustained heavy front end damage in the accident and the front wheel on the driver's side was snapped off of the axle, according to police.
When questioned by police at the scene, Petersen admitted to drinking a couple of drinks before driving, was "wobbly, swaying side to side" and was "unsteady on his feet," according to court documents.
Petersen reportedly declined to take a breathalyzer test and refused to submit to a series of field sobriety tests. Petersen told police he was bipolar and had been taking antidepressants, according to court documents.
According to a report issued by Sgt. Donald Decker, Petersen "exhibited indicators of impairment, consistent with that of alcohol influence."
Petersen is scheduled to return to court on Nov. 23 for a pretrial conference.