One woman was arrested and another escaped after a Gwinnett County Police officer made every attempt to allow the women to "go home and get sober" during a June 14 incident at the Mall of Georgia in Buford.
The security guard stopped the females and questioned them about their level of intoxication. The females reportedly became defensive, at which point the security guard informed them they were no longer welcome on mall property.
One of the females, later identified as Michele Hanson of Lawrenceville, allegedly informed the guard she was going inside the mall to get a new contact lens from Lenscrafters. The GCPD officer stepped in at that point and informed the females they would be leaving. The women agreed to take a taxi home and were instructed to sit and wait at one of four outside tables until the cab arrived. Of the four tables, only one was occupied and that was the one the two females chose.
"The young couple seated at the table appeared to be very uncomfortable with Hanson and her friend sitting with them," the officer observed.
The officer then told the women to move to one of the unoccupied tables. Hanson reportedly replied, "No, I'm good." The officer again instructed her to move and she complied.
According to the incident report, the longer Hanson waited for the cab, the more "aggressive" she became. Hanson allegedly began using profane language despite the presence of small children in the area. The cab arrived a short time later and the officer escorted the two women to the taxi and they left. Ten minutes later, the officer received a phone call from the taxi driver advising the women were "giving her a hard time."
The officer instructed the cab driver to bring both women back to the mall where he would take custody of them. Before the cab driver could do so, Hanson's friend jumped out of the taxi at the intersection of Buford Drive and Mall of Georgia Boulevard. The officer searched for the woman, but was unable to find her. Hanson was taken into custody and cited for disorderly conduct. She was transported to the Gwinnett County Jail.
"In summary, I made every attempt to allow Hanson and her friend to go home in order to get sober, but Hanson refused and insisted on disturbing the peace around her," the officer explained. "I charged Hanson with disorderly conduct under the Gwinnett County ordinance 74-4 (7) because Hanson appeared to be intoxicated in a public place and her condition was manifested by her boisterous horseplay with her friend and her repeated use of profane language in the presence of the public."
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