Wrong-way Highway 101 driver arrested for suspected DUI

The CHP is seeking witnesses who may have seen a wrong-way driver around midnight Sunday on Highway 101 in or near Rohnert Park.

That’s when law enforcement authorities said they began receiving a flurry of calls about someone driving a black Audi sedan north in the southbound lanes near Golf Course Drive. The car was traveling 20 to 25 mph and had its hazard lights on, CHP Officer Kimberly Lemons said.

A responding Sonoma County sheriff’s deputy found what appeared to be the suspect vehicle just after it exited the highway at Todd Road a few minutes after midnight, CHP said.

The driver, Heike Kirchner, 42, of Napa, appeared to be under the influence of alcohol and had a prior conviction for driving while intoxicated, CHP said. She was arrested on suspicion of driving drunk and was required to provide a sample for a blood-alcohol test, authorities said.

Kirchner was booked into Sonoma County Jail but was released Monday morning.

You can reach Staff Writer Mary Callahan at 707-521-5249 or On Twitter @MaryCallahanB.

Mary Callahan

Environment and Climate Change, The Press Democrat

I am in awe of the breathtaking nature here in Sonoma County and am so grateful to live in this spectacular region we call home. I am amazed, too, by the expertise in our community and by the commitment to protecting the land, its waterways, its wildlife and its residents. My goal is to improve understanding of the issues, to find hope and to help all of us navigate the future of our environment. 

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