Prosecutors: Local woman drove drunk from wedding with children in the vehicle

A Kalispell woman who allegedly drove home drunk from a wedding with her children in the vehicle earlier this month now faces a felony criminal child endangerment charge.

Celina Marie Riley, 29, boasted a breath alcohol content of .166, or more than double the legal limit, when Flathead County Sheriff’s Office deputies caught up to her at her home on Oct. 16, according to court documents. Initially held in the county jail with bail set at $40,000, Riley was released on her own recognizance Oct. 19.

Deputies met up with Riley, her spouse and a mutual friend following reports of a disturbance in a Kalispell home about 12:06 a.m., though the driving occurred earlier in the evening, court documents said. The two witnesses told deputies that all three attended a wedding held near the Flathead River.

Departing the venue, Riley got behind the wheel with her spouse and children in the vehicle, court documents said. The couple’s friend followed along behind.

The friend saw Riley’s vehicle veer into a ditch several times as well as speed up and slow down, according to court documents. As the vehicle approached Willow Glen Drive, Riley’s spouse hopped out and tried to remove their children from inside. Riley, though, hit the gas and allegedly drove off with a passenger door still open.

Riley’s spouse then hopped into the friend’s vehicle and they followed her back to the couple’s Kalispell home, court documents said. Both her spouse and friend told deputies that she was drunk, according to court documents.

Investigators reported that Riley admitted to drinking at the wedding and to driving afterwards, according to court documents. She allegedly showed signs of impairment during field sobriety tests and later agreed to a preliminary breath test.

Her arraignment in Flathead County District Court is scheduled for Oct. 27. Criminal child endangerment is punishable by up to 10 years in Montana State Prison and a $50,000 fine.

News Editor Derrick Perkins can be reached at 758-4430 or