Government or public figures implicated in a scandal may take a variety of approaches. Some may deny all charges, while others offer no comment. At a minimum, it is often advisable to consult with an attorney before making public admissions. However, Travis County district attorney Rosemary Lehmberg did none of these actions.
The district attorney was recently arrested on driving while intoxicated charges. Authorities received a 911 call around 10:45 p.m. on a Friday night, reporting a four-door Lexus driving erratically, weaving, and possibly crossing into oncoming traffic at certain points. When the police arrived and pulled the car over, they discovered its driver was the local district attorney.
According to reports, the district attorney failed a field sobriety test and confessed to drinking two vodka drinks. Police also noted in their arrest affidavit that the woman’s speech was slurred, that she staggered while walking, that her eyes were bloodshot, and that her breath smelled faintly of alcohol.
In addition to confessing her actions at the time of arrest, the district attorney subsequently wrote a letter to the prosecutor, admitting her guilt and entering an unconditional guilty plea. She also released the letter to the media. She was released after paying a $3,000 bond and is awaiting her trial.
The district attorney position is an elected post, with a four-year term. It is unclear whether the woman will resign from her position. However, her story reminds readers that everyone should know their own limits or have a transportation plan in place before consuming any drinks.
Facing DWI charges without an attorney is not recommended for most DWI defendants, but this particular woman’s approach may be more about public forgiveness, rather than DWI defense strategy.
Source: “Travis County DA Sentenced to 45 Days for DWI,” Express News, April 19, 2013