TEXARKANA, TX (KSLA) - A late-night ride down the railroad tracks landed a Texarkana woman in jail and left her van a smoldering wreck.
It was reports of gunshots that led officers to the Kansas City railroad tracks in a wooded area near Miller-Bowie Supply at 11:37 p.m. Wednesday, where they found 73-year-old Bennie Joe Horsley of Texarkana, Texas standing outside her burning 2007 Kia van.
It turned out that the loud noises were actually the sound of the vehicle running over the tracks, rather than gunshots.
The Texarkana Texas Fire Department responded and extinguished the fire. The vehicle was a total loss.
Horsley told officers that she had been trying to get home. As the officers spoke to Horsley, they say they began to suspect that she was intoxicated.
After she failed to successfully complete a series of standardized field sobriety tests, she was arrested and transported to the Bi-State Jail. She remains in jail on a charge of DWI, first offense. Her bond was set at $5,000.
It is believed that Horsley initially got on the railroad tracks where they cross Front Street and traveled approximately a quarter of a mile before her vehicle became disabled. In the course of driving over a bridge and through two track switches, she appears to have jumped back and forth over the rails several times.
Sparks created as she repeated struck the rails likely ignited oil leaking from the vehicle and resulted in the fire. Train traffic to that section of railroad was suspended until the vehicle could be removed, which could not be accomplished until morning due to the condition and isolated location of the vehicle.