A popular OBGYN doctor who has delivered countless local children was arrested Sunday afternoon for DUI after North Augusta police found him passed out in his vehicle with an open bottle of beer, according to a NADPS report.
Dr. William Lavigne, 78, was found passed out at 6:30 p.m. Sunday behind the wheel of a car that was stopped in the middle of the road on West Clifton Avenue at Meridian Avenue, the report says. He was 3.5 miles away from his home on Overlook Court in North Augusta.
From the report: “Reporting officer observed an open bottle of beer in a cup holder on the driver side door and a six pack of beer on the passenger seat that was missing three beers. Reporting officer woke the driver/suspect, Mr. Lavigne, and based on the observation of open containers, asked Mr. Lavigne how much he consumed. Mr. Lavigne advised he only had half of a coke. Reporting officer asked why he was stopped in the road and he advised that he was waiting on a car. When asked what car he was waiting on, he advised ‘A MEDICAL STUDENT.'”
The driver was unsteady on his feet, used the car for balance and smelled of alcohol, the report says. He failed a few sobriety tests and failed three times to provide an adequate breath sample. He refused a blood test and was informed his driver’s license would be suspended based on the refusal.
Dr. Lavigne was taken to the Aiken County Detention Center to be booked for DUI – refusal. His vehicle was towed from the scene.
According to healthgrades.com, Dr. Lavigne is an Obstetrics & Gynecology Specialist in Augusta and has over 47 years of experience in the medical field. He graduated from Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara medical school in 1974, the site says.
Once his mugshot was posted Monday on AugustaCrime.com, it was shared nearly 500 times on Facebook with over 130 comments, mainly from people whose babies he had delivered
Aimee Parks said the doctor had delivered all of her children and was an amazing doctor. “We All Make Mistakes. This Is Kind Of Disappointing. But I Wouldn’t Trust Any Other Doctor. As Far As Bed Side Manner Everyone May Not Like His Personality But Thats All A Part Of What Makes Him A Good And Personable Doctor.”
Patricia Cottrell said, “My first child I had him as my doctor he decided he was going to take a vacation on My due date so Dr. Hatch had to deliver my daughter.”
Jessica Huff said, “He delivered all 4 of mine with no problem! Drunk or not all 4 deliveries went well!!!”
A woman answering the phone at his office hung up Monday afternoon when The Jail Report asked for any statement.