Texas district attorney apologizes from jail for driving extremely drunk
Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg published an open letter from jail on Saturday, apologizing for driving with a blood-alcohol level three times over the legal limit.
“I apologize to all of you,” she wrote. “There can be no anger directed at me – or disappointment in me – greater than my own. And, I neither believe nor expect that any words written or speech given can possibly convey the magnitude of the shame I feel for breaking the law and therefore, the trust with the people I serve and the community I love.”
The 63-year-old Austin resident and longtime Travis County employee, elected DA in 2009, was arrested on April 12 after officers found an open container of vodka in the seat next to her. Lehmberg reportedly declined to undergo sobriety testing for more than a few minutes. She later claimed that she’d only had two beverages, but was on a prescription medication that exacerbated the alcohol’s effects.
Lehmberg, who still has not resigned, went on to say that she will seek professional treatment after her release, even as she continues to prosecute people who’ve committed the offense of drunk driving. And she’s still facing several more weeks behind bars as part of a 45-day sentence, according to The Austin American Statesman.
A petition seeking her removal from office is awaiting action by a district court, the paper added. Similarly, some members of the legislature are seeking ways to undermine her authority, if not force her out completely.
“As others have stated, I have never planned to seek a third term and will not,” she added. “It is my hope to complete my term in office to complete the work we (my dedicated professional staff and I) started four years ago. I am proud of the work we have done from this office over the last 37 years and I hope to have the opportunity to continue that service.”
“I offer my deepest regret and most sincere apology and seek forgiveness from the people of Travis County,” Lehmberg concluded.
This video is from Austin-based ABC News affiliate KVUE-TV, aired Saturday, April 27, 2013.