HOUSTON (AP) — Police documents from a decades-old drunken-driving arrest of Democratic Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke reveal previously unreported details about an incident that the congressman has long acknowledged.
The Houston Chronicle and the San Antonio Express-News recently obtained copies of state and local police reports pertaining to the arrest. They show O’Rourke was found intoxicated after losing control of his vehicle on Interstate 10 and hitting a truck. Nobody was hurt in the accident in Anthony, Texas, about 20 miles (32 kilometers) from El Paso. A witness told police that O’Rourke tried to drive away, but the witness stopped him until officers arrived, the documents show.
O’Rourke had just turned 26. He did a court-ordered diversion program and a drunken-driving charge was dismissed.
He has talked about the arrest while campaigning to unseat Republican Sen. Ted Cruz. In a recent op-ed , he described the incident as a “serious mistake for which there is no excuse.” He has not addressed the witness account of his alleged attempt to flee.
According to police, O’Rourke recorded a 0.136 and 0.134 on breathalyzers, above a blood-alcohol level of 0.10, Texas’ legal limit for driving at the time.
Cruz has never been arrested, but was once ticketed for underage alcohol possession when he was 17 and police stopped him and found unopened beer in his car.
Information from: Houston Chronicle, http://www.houstonchronicle.com