Yavapai Superior Court judge faces ‘super extreme DUI’ charge after stop near Prescott Safeway

Yavapai County Superior Court Judge Celé Hancock is facing DUI-related charges.
Yavapai County Superior Court Judge Celé Hancock is facing DUI-related charges.(Yavapai County)
Published: Mar. 21, 2023 at 8:41 AM MST|Updated: Mar. 21, 2023 at 10:32 AM MST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

PRESCOTT, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- A Yavapai County Superior Court is finding herself on the other side of the law after being accused of driving under the influence.

According to court records, Celé Hancock faces four counts of DUI charges, including Super Extreme DUI after being arrested by Prescott police officers on Sunday. For reference, a BAC of .20 and above is classified as Super Extreme DUI.

According to the arrest report obtained by Arizona’s Family, officers responded to a report of an intoxicated woman at the Safeway on SR-89 near Copper Basin Road just after 4 p.m. A Prescott officer arrived to find Hancock sitting in her Toyota 4Runner in the grocery store parking lot. After a short time, Hancock left the parking and started driving on Montezuma Street, and the officer pulled her over.

The officer introduced himself, and Hancock, reportedly in a quick, slurred speech, responded with “Umm... I’m going back to Safeway to get my wallet.” Documents also revealed that the officer noticed her eyes were red, bloodshot, and watering. The officer then told her that someone had reported her being drunk and stumbling inside the store. Hancock said, “No, no, no, I was just trying to get my prescription.” Hancock was asked to turn off the car and was asked if she was drinking.

After she was asked to get out of the car, the officer asked if she had any medical history that could affect her driving ability. Hancock answered that she had a “seizure disorder” but didn’t clarify. She then stated that she was trying to pick up her seizure medication. Officers then conducted a field sobriety test which suggested impairment, and a breathalyzer test measured .158. Hancock was taken into custody and taken to the Prescott police station, where an officer read her Miranda rights. At that time, she requested an attorney and was given 15 minutes to call a lawyer.

Officers then went back into the room and read the implied consent affidavit. The arrest report says she took a moment before saying: “Sure, it does not matter. My career is already over.” Two additional breath samples were taken with readings of .219 and .214. A blood draw was successful, and the officer didn’t take a urine sample. Hancock told officers wouldn’t answer any further questions with her lawyer present. After processing, she was cited and released.

Yavapai County Superior Court has issued a statement that reads in part: “The Court has a duty to obtain as much information as possible about any criminal allegations related to its personnel. This process is no different for judges.” According to the court’s website, Hancock was elected in 2010 and currently serves as the Division 5 judge. She has been licensed to practice law in Arizona since 1996.