Woman Pleads Not Guilty to Trying to Run Over Deputy

Authorities say Rebecca Lee McLaughlin tried to run down a sheriff's deputy at John Wayne Airport.

Rebecca Lee McLaughlin (Photo courtesy Orange County Sheriff's Department)
Rebecca Lee McLaughlin (Photo courtesy Orange County Sheriff's Department)

A 48-year-old Newport Beach woman accused of trying to run down a sheriff's deputy at John Wayne Airport pleaded not guilty today, court records show.

Rebecca Lee McLaughlin faces one count each of attempted murder of a peace officer, aggravated assault on a peace officer and assault with a deadly weapon or force likely to produce great bodily injury. She pleaded not guilty to the charges at the Harbor Justice Center in Newport Beach, court records show.

McLaughlin will return to court on Sept. 19 for a pretrial hearing and remains behind bars on $500,000. If convicted she could face a life sentence.

The charges against McLaughlin stem from an incident on the night of July 16  when a sheriff's deputy on a bicycle patrol, heard a collision in a parking garage. According to Orange County Sheriff's Lt. Jeff Hallock, when the officer got to the scene, McLaughlin suddenly backed up her Toyota Sequoia and then drove toward the officer, who ended up on the hood of her car.

McLaughlin's SUV came to a stop after it jumped a curb and slammed into a parking pole, according to prosecutors. The officer arrested her shortly after.

According to the Orange County district attorney's office, the officer was thrown about 20 feet. He was treated at a hospital for minor injuries

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