A south side woman’s defense against an assault charge should have been foolproof, but Pima County deputies didn’t see it her way.

Deputies responded to a report of an altercation in the parking lot of a Jack in the Box on East Valencia Road. A 69-year-old man and his 46-year-old girlfriend of 11 years were arguing and the man had asked the restaurant manager to call 911.

Deputies interviewed the woman who was argumentative, nonsensical and possibly intoxicated since she smelled like booze and she told deputies she drank “half a pint since this morning,” according to the report. She told them her boyfriend, with whom she had a child, had struck her in the face.

Her companion didn’t deny hitting her, but he said he was trying to stop her from grabbing the gearshift and throwing his van into park as they were driving 40 miles per hour down Valencia Road. The couple had been arguing and the woman accused the man of “having an affair,” according to the late September report. He told deputies he was not having an affair, he just wanted to break up with the woman.

When she repeatedly reached for the gearshift, according to the sheriff’s report, “He said he kept trying to push her away and she then bit him on the wrist. He corrected himself and said she gummed him. He said (she) did not have teeth so she bit him on the wrist using her gums.”

According to the deputy: “I asked him how he was bleeding if she did not have teeth. He said she bit him extremely hard in using her gums and he pulled away.”

After that, he said he “backhanded her in the face with the back of his hand so she would stop and he could pull over into the Jack in the Box parking lot safely.”

The woman offered the deputies proof she did not assault her boyfriend — “She said there was no way she could have bitten (him) because she had no teeth. She showed me her mouth several times and I noted there were no teeth in (her) mouth” — but she was arrested anyway.

And the drama didn’t end when she was handcuffed and driven to jail. While in the back of the squad car the woman claimed she needed medical attention because she couldn’t breathe, then laid down in the backseat.

Once at the jail, the woman “was pretending she had passed out. She opened her eyes and said she could not breathe, but her breathing appeared to have been normal.”

The deputy wrangled her out of the car escorted her in to the jail, but when they “got inside she began to yell for an ambulance … and she made her voice very raspy, saying she was having trouble breathing.”

The woman was checked out by the jail’s medical staff, which found nothing physically wrong with her.