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State representative in Arizona accused of drunk driving

A state representative has allegedly admitted to drinking behind the wheel of his car after he was pulled over, according to local sources. Arizona Highway Patrol pulled the government official over for allegedly speeding, and the arrest took place. He has been charged with drunk driving as well as several other minor infractions, and is currently awaiting trial. 

According to the arrest record, the man was pulled over for traveling 68 mph in a 55 mph zone. When officers approached the car, the man was apparently asked if he had any alcohol, to which he allegedly responded in the negative. When pressed, he apparently admitted to having gin in his coffee cup. Police conducted a Breathalyzer test that was only partially completed. 

As a result of the incomplete Breathalyzer, the county attorney for Navajo County conditionally dismissed the drunk driving charges pending a more thorough blood test, which was apparently requested by the man at the time of his arrest. The results of those tests could take "some time" to be returned to the court, so for the moment the man is not in police custody. No official reconvening date has yet been set. 

Considering the man requested a blood draw, this could bode well for him in an Arizona court. In order to be convicted of drunk driving, prosecutors will have to prove that he was above the .08 legal limit when officers pulled him over. If the results of the blood test prove he was below that limit, the charges could be lessened or dropped altogether. It may also be taken into consideration that the Breathalyzer test was said to have been initially conducted incorrectly. 

Source: azcentral.com, "Report: State Rep. Hale had gin in coffee while driving", Mary Jo Pitzl, Dec. 16, 2014

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