An Orange County woman who allegedly struck and seriously injured an Indio Police Department motorcycle officer while under the influence of a mood-altering drug pleaded not guilty to DUI charges Thursday.

Margaret Kendric, 55, of Orange, is accused in the Oct. 9, 2016, crash that left Officer Jeffery Merritt hospitalized with major injuries. At about 3:30 p.m., Kendric struck the officer’s motorcycle with her Nissan Murano at the intersection of Jackson Street and Odium Drive, according to the California Highway Patrol. Merritt was thrown from the bike, causing injuries that have him left him in a wheelchair.

An arrest warrant declaration alleges that Kendric “displayed objective signs and symptom(s) of drug impairment” and performed poorly on field sobriety tests. A blood draw taken from Kendric showed “the presence of amphetamines,” the declaration says.

Kendric, who faces a felony count of driving under the influence of drugs causing injury and a sentence-enhancing allegation of inflicting great bodily injury, was arrested at 5:40 p.m. last Thursday by Los Angeles Airport Police.

She was released from Los Angeles County custody Tuesday morning and booked into the Robert Presley Detention Center in Riverside, with bail set at $90,000, according to county jail records.

Kendric is slated to return to court July 23 for a felony settlement conference.

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