A busy Westside plasma-donation clinic was rocked Saturday afternoon after a woman intentionally drove her car through the entrance following a dispute with employees, creating a chaotic scene and sending herself and eight others to local hospitals for non-life-threatening injuries, police said.
Miller will be charged with aggravated battery, police said.
DCI Biologicals is in a large strip shopping center, home to a thrift store, Dollar Tree and several other businesses, just south of Wilson Boulevard. A Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office substation is also in the shopping center, and police were able to respond to the hectic scene quickly.
Moments before Miller drove her car into the clinic, Jamal Ford had just walked out of the building after donating plasma. He said Miller approached the clinic in her red Honda Accord, stopped in front for a moment and then appeared to step on the accelerator, sending the car careening into the building.
“There was screaming, hollering. Everybody is in a state of shock,” Ford said. “I was absolutely terrified.”
Miller’s car plowed about 40 feet into the building, police said. She reversed and hit a concrete pillar underneath the store’s awning.
It’s unclear how fast Miller was going when she drove through the entrance. Evidence technicians are trying to determine her speed, police said.
Half of Miller’s remained under a covered walkway as onlookers – some who were hoping to donate plasma – passed by. The damage inside the clinic was extensive: part of the roof had collapsed, as had counters.
“It was definitely a chaotic scene,” said Sheriff’s Lt. Derrick Mitchell, who was in the substation and among the first to respond.
Investigators are looking into whether drugs played a role in the incident.
Police are also questioning a man who identified himself as Miller’s boyfriend.