A middle school principal from Dedham, Massachusetts, is off the job after being accused of drunk driving.
Debra Gately, the principal at Dedham Middle School, has been placed on administrative leave after her arrest on Sunday.
According to police, Gately could barely stand up after she was pulled over.
"Ms. Gately is a fantastic principal," said Melissa Giannangelo, a parent of a student. "Very well liked at the school, advocate for all the students. It's just, it's a sad situation."
According to court documents, she was seen driving erratically on I-95 in Weston just after midnight on Sunday.
Police say she nearly crashed her car four times. An off-duty Waltham Police officer had been following her and called 911.
Gately pulled into this parking lot, and when police arrived, court records indicate she failed three sobriety tests.
"I don't condone drinking and driving, but many of us have made mistakes over the years," said Lisa MacKinnon, whose child attends the school. "It's an unfortunate incident, and I'm just here to show my support."
Investigators say Gately's blood-alcohol content was more than twice the legal limit.
Gately is a former Principal of the Year, awarded by the Massachusetts Secondary School Administrators Association.
The latest news from around the state
Wednesday night, the superintendent of the school district addressed the allegations and says he's disappointed in the incident.
"I have spoken with Ms. Gately and she understands that her actions have generated unwanted attention for the school and the community," said Superintendent Michael Welch.
Gately has been placed on leave for the time being.
"I don’t think that someone's life should be ruined for one mistake," said Nancy Kaaz. "She is loved by the children and the community."
According to court records, the principal told police she had consumed three vodkas, but was unable to clearly communicate where she'd been.