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Sunday, May 26 Police Reports

Police: New Canaan driver drunk on vanilla extract

NEW CANAAN - A 50-year-old New Canaan woman was arrested Wednesday for driving under the influence of vanilla extract.

Police were called at 4:45 p.m. after a person reported a car stopped at the intersection of Grove and Pine streets with the driver sitting behind the wheel with her eyes closed.

The driver was identified as Stefanie Warner-Grise, of Park Street.

“Upon speaking with Warner-Grise, officers detected an odor of vanilla coming from her breath, her speech was slurred and she was unable to answer basic questions,” according to the arrest report.

“In addition, several bottles of pure vanilla extract were located inside the vehicle.”

After she failed sobriety tests, she was taken into custody. She refused to take a blood alcohol test and was held on $250 bond.

According to the Food and Drug Administration regulations, pure vanilla extract must contain 35 percent alcohol that makes it 70 proof.

According to medicaldaily.com, in most cases the alcohol in vanilla is burned away in the cooking process, but when ingested directly, the effects are similar to drinking hard liquor.

It said a person weighting around 154 pounds, who drinks a 12-ounce bottle of extract will have a peak BAC three times the legal driving limit.

McCormick’s Pure Vanilla Extra, one of the most popular brands, has a 41 percent alcohol content, making it 82 proof.

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