Hawkins man accused of hitting girlfriend with vehicle in restaurant parking lot

Rain Smith • Jun 14, 2010 at 1:23 AM

A Mount Carmel man has been arrested after allegedly hitting his girlfriend with a vehicle in the parking lot of a Kingsport restaurant.

The suspect, Randall J. Hillenberg, 52, of 1224 Independence Ave., claimed it was an accident. But after interviewing witnesses at the scene, including an O' Charley's waitress who served the couple, police charged Hillenberg with aggravated domestic assault and driving under the influence.

According to a Kingsport Police Department arrest report, the incident occurred at about 10:30 Saturday night at 1920 North Eastman Road. The responding officer arrived to find a 44-year-old woman on the ground in the parking lot, "screaming as if in great pain."

According to police, "Hillenberg was sitting on the curb smoking."

A witness in the parking lot reported that Hillenberg had pulled forward and struck the woman with his vehicle. According to the report, a waitress who had served the couple inside the restaurant claimed the couple had been arguing.

During that argument, Hillenberg allegedly left the restaurant. According to the waitress, the victim then relayed she was afraid of Hillenberg and was reluctant to leave.

Police report Hillenberg then came back inside the restaurant and told the woman to, "come on."

According to the report, Hillenberg backed his vehicle out of the parking space. When the woman crossed in front of the vehicle to walk to the passenger side door, "Hillenberg went forward," and knocked her to the ground.

"Hillenberg then parked the vehicle, got out, and sat on the curb," reads the report.

The woman was taken to Holston Valley Medical center. The report classified her injuries as non-life threatening.

The officer reports that while speaking with Hillenberg he was unsteady on his feet, had an odor of alcohol and bloodshot eyes. He allegedly told police he had a couple of mixed drinks, which the waitress confirmed.

Hillenberg then relayed that he and his girlfriend had began to argue while inside the restaurant. He said he had decided to leave, and his girlfriend wasn't going to come with him.

Contrary to witness accounts, Hillenberg allegedly told police that he had backed into the woman while leaving the space, as she walked behind his vehicle and he didn't see her.

Police report Hillenberg performed poorly on a series of field sobriety tests. He was then arrested and charged with aggravated domestic assault and DUI.

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