Thursday, March 22, 2012

Bethlehem 911 dispatcher allegedly lied to police about sex assault following DUI

On February 25th, Ashley J. Wenbourne, a 911 dispatcher, told police that the reason she was driving while intoxicated was that she was fleeing from being sexually assaulted. 

Police, in court records, identified her as a dispatcher, and said that she was familiar with how domestic violence and sexual assault crimes are handled and reported. 

This all began, on the morning of February 25th, when Wenbourne crashed her car around 3:30. Police determined that she was intoxicated. Hours after she had been processed, she called the department to add information on the crash. Records show that she claimed she had been sexually assaulted by a friend of her boyfriend and that she attempted to drive home intoxicated because she was scared.

Police indicated that she made no mention of the assault during the processing, or earlier, at the scene of the crash.
When the authorities began investigating her claim later that morning, she claimed that she, her boyfriend, and his friend had been drinking when the friend supposedly  began touching her inappropriately, and that is when she left and crashed her car. In a later interview, she told police that she didn't want anything done, and only wanted to "set the record straight."

At that point, she recanted her claims and admitted they were lies made out of spite.

The boyfriend was brought in and questioned, but he denied seeing any assault, and said that in the past, his girlfriend had threatened to tell police he had sexually assaulted her. During this questioning, it was learned that she had been texting him, at which point her cell phone was seized.

However, she later asked to call her father, and at that point, deleted some of the text's and refused to answer any other questions.

A preliminary hearing date was slated for April 17 before District Judge Roy Manwaring on charges of tampering with evidence, providing a false report incriminating another, and providing a false report about an offense that had not occurred, court records say.