This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2015, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
A July preliminary hearing has been set for a Davis County School District bus driver charged with being under the influence of prescription drugs last year while driving a bus with about 70 schoolchildren and their adult chaperones onboard.
Lycia Kae Martinez, 40, has been charged in 3rd District Court with DUI, a class A misdemeanor, and failure to stay in one lane, a class C misdemeanor.
A preliminary hearing to determine if there is sufficient evidence to advance the case to trial, is set for July 20 before Judge William Kendall in West Jordan.
On Oct. 13, several witnesses including a chaperone inside the bus called 911 to report several near-collisions with other vehicles as the bus sped through southern Salt Lake County during a field trip to Brigham Young University in Provo.
"She almost hit this van next to us!" one chaperone told dispatchers. "OK, I am honestly shaking at this point. I'm going to just close my eyes so I see nothing."
After a Utah Highway Patrol trooper pulled the bus over, Martinez was arrested.
According to a probable cause statement filed in court, Martinez had four bottles of pills containing clonidine, cyclobenzaprine, Xanax and meloxicam in her purse. Toxicology reports showed Martinez had clonidine and Xanax "in amounts exceeding the upper range of the recommended daily dosage" in her blood. She also had cyclobenzaprine, a central nervous system depressant, in her system, according to court records.
After her arrest, her license was suspended for 120 days, according to court records filed by her attorney.
In December, Martinez asked for a judicial review of the license suspension, arguing that she suffered memory loss from migraine medication given to her the day before the arrest and was unaware of a 10-day window to request a driver license hearing.
Her attorney, Bradley Schofield, argued in the petition that his client was not under the influence of alcohol or drugs that day, but had suffered from a migraine and was distracted by several radio calls.
"Due to a shortage of bus drivers and confusion for the school district, [Martinez] received several calls on the bus radio regarding her regular route," Schofield wrote. "The radio is above the head of the driver and is difficult to get the microphone in and out of the slot. [Martinez] believes this may have caused the bus to drift."
Schofield said in the petition that a toxicology test on a blood sample from Martinez was never completed because "there was insufficient quantity for testing."