Police: Firefighter, wife involved in drunken hit-and-run of 14-year-old

GOOSE CREEK, S.C. (WCIV) -- A Joint Base Charleston firefighter and his wife were charged in a DUI after the car police say he was driving hit a 14-year-old girl on Sunday afternoon in the couple's neighborhood.

According to the Goose Creek Police Department, 50-year-old Robert Semashko and his wife, 53-year-old Donna Semashko, were charged in the accident that sent the 14-year-old girl to Medical University Hospital.

Mr. Semashko was charged with felony DUI and hit-and-run. His wife was charged with obstruction of justice, the report states.

According to the report, Mr. Semashko blew a .17 on a Breathalyzer.

The report states that the victim and four other people were walking along a neighborhood road when a speeding car came at them. One of the witnesses said she tried to pull the victim out of the way, but the car hit her before speeding off.

Two other people who saw the accident told police they chased the car briefly before watching it turn onto a cul-de-sac.

Officers followed the information of the witnesses to a home on Ricky Court where they found the car parked outside a home. Inside, they found the Semashkos.

During interviews, Mrs. Semashko at first told officers she had been driving the car, but later said she claimed responsibility because her husband is a firefighter and did not want him to lose his job.

Mrs. Semashko said the couple had been with another friend at Sapphires Bar drinking before making the drive home.

At the same time, Mr. Semashko claimed his wife was driving the car at the time of the accident, but officers noted that "[he] was uncooperative and over-cautious when answering any questions, appearing to have to think of the best answer to provide."

Officers said Mr. Semashko also asked several times, while stumbling, "What's going on."

Witnesses, however, put Mr. Semashko behind the wheel at the time of the accident.

Mr. Semashko refused to perform the field sobriety tests, police said, and was placed under arrest. Both Semashkos were taken to the Berkeley County Detention Center.

Mrs. Semashko has been released, but Mr. Semashko remains in the jail's custody. The teen girl who was hit has been discharged, hospital officials said Tuesday evening.

Joint Base Charleston officials would only confirm that Mr. Semashko is a civilian member of the fire department there, but declined to make any further comment.

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