Travis County DA Refuses to Resign after DWI

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Travis County DA Refuses to Resign after DWI

The Travis County DA was arrested for DWI April 12th with alcohol in her system almost 3 times the legal limit. She is now serving a 45 day jail sentence while still being paid. She is not only the DA for Travis county but is also the head of the Public Integrity Unit for the whole state which investigates corruption by lawmakers. She refuses to resign and since she is an elected official they can't just fire her, so they are having to file a lawsuit to try and get her out of office. Her term isn't up until 2016.

What Happens Next? As D.A. Rosemary Lehmberg serves her sentence, the county attorney takes on the civil lawsuit and the next steps - News - The Austin Chronicle

She has written a letter of apology from jail and stated she will seek professional treatment after her release.

A Letter From Rosemary

Should this apology be enough or should they try to get her out of office any way they can since she won't resign?

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I feel she should resign. A DA cannot properly represent when they themselves have broken a law. She's lucky she didn't kill anyone.

I think they should pursue other means to oust her.

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No, I think she made 1 mistake and has learned her lesson.

A week after her arrest, Lehmberg pleaded guilty in county court to the charge and was sentenced to 45 days in jail ? the harshest sentence ever handed to a local defendant in a first-time DWI case, her attorney David Shep*pard told reporters after she was led from the courtroom to the jail in handcuffs.

The entire incident is, at best, embarrassing for Lehmberg, 63, who has worked for the D.A.'s office for nearly four decades.

So for almost 40 years in the DA's offices and 4 years as an elected official her abilities haven't been called into question? I'm not at all condoning what she did; I just don't think one incident should define her.

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In this case I think it's a huge mistake. Locally last year, a cop lost his job for after work racist comments and I supported that. How can people trust her judgement when she was arrested for DWI and for being over 3x the legal limit? I wouldn't.

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"ethanwinfield" wrote:

No, I think she made 1 mistake and has learned her lesson.

So for almost 40 years in the DA's offices and 4 years as an elected official her abilities haven't been called into question? I'm not at all condoning what she did; I just don't think one incident should define her.

Would you feel differently if she had killed someone, which very easily could have happened given the fact that she veered into oncoming traffic and drove in the bike lane? She wasn't just slightly drunk, she was almost 3 times the limit.

According to the Austin American-Statesman, Travis County deputies arrested Lehmberg, 63, late last Friday after a witness called 911 to report a car driving for about a mile in a bike lane, swerving and veering into oncoming traffic, according to an arrest affidavit. The affidavit also said investigators found a bottle of vodka on the passenger seat of Lehmberg’s Lexus. Much of the arrest and Lehmberg’s several hours in jail were documented on patrol car and jail cameras.

Jail term for Travis DA might not be end of her troubles | Opinion Blog

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"Jessica80" wrote:

In this case I think it's a huge mistake. Locally last year, a cop lost his job for after work racist comments and I supported that. How can people trust her judgement when she was arrested for DWI and for being over 3x the legal limit? I wouldn't.

So 40 years of good judgment is wiped out in 1 mistake? Guess we shouldn't have elected Bush/Cheney.

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In this case, given her position, yes.

I've gone 17 years without driving drunk. If I drive drunk tonight should I get off with a warning because I was nice before now? It is possible I could lose my job if I couldn't get to work and I barely commute.

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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

Would you feel differently if she had killed someone, which very easily could have happened given the fact that she veered into oncoming traffic and drove in the bike lane? She wasn't just slightly drunk, she was almost 3 times the limit.

Jail term for Travis DA might not be end of her troubles | Opinion Blog

I don't condone what she did and yes i would feel differently because it would be a felony and prison time. I just think it's up to the voters to recall her. Marion Barry was reelected after his 6 months in federal prison were up. That man is still in politics in spite of all the crap he's done.

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I agree that there are others that have done similar or worse crap like Barry but I don't think it's a good idea to say...well if one does it we are okay if another does it. I think pursuing a course of action to take her off is okay.

I have to admit, I'm not sure how this would work locally. I feel like it would at the very least be brought to a vote but someone has to place it on the ballot. That I'll have to research.

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I'm in the has to go camp. A glass of wine too many can happen to anyone. 3 TIMES THE LIMIT? Bottle on the seat? Way big problem at work here. Wanton disregard for the law. Has to go.

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"Potter75" wrote:

I'm in the has to go camp. A glass of wine too many can happen to anyone. 3 TIMES THE LIMIT? Bottle on the seat? Way big problem at work here. Wanton disregard for the law. Has to go.

I have to agree with this. As much as I want to say give her a break, she's got 40 years of good judgment behind her, this is far *far* beyond a simple mistake that can be overlooked. Three times the legal limit??? That's like six glasses of wine in an hour. That's not a mistake, that's abuse.

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"Potter75" wrote:

I'm in the has to go camp. A glass of wine too many can happen to anyone. 3 TIMES THE LIMIT? Bottle on the seat? Way big problem at work here. Wanton disregard for the law. Has to go.

I have to agree with this. As much as I want to say give her a break, she's got 40 years of good judgment behind her, this is far *far* beyond a simple mistake that can be overlooked. Three times the legal limit??? That's like six glasses of wine in an hour. That's not a mistake, that's abuse.

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ANY police officer convicted of DWI would be fired. If a police officer was arrested for DWI SHE would be the one prosecuting the case. I just don't think it would be right for her to prosecute a police officer who would be immediately fired for something she herself has done and just because she is higher up the chain she gets away with it.

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I'm with EW on this one. Smile Yes, if she had've killed someone I would feel different, but the bottom line is that she didn't. I'm just looking at the facts, not the hypotheticals. I would have to assume that after 40 years she has likely exercised sound judgment in her career. I believe the court attempted to make an example of her by giving her the harshest sentence for a first-time DWI.

I also want to clarify, I don't think that she's a model citizen and that she has this divine right to keep her position forever, just that I don't feel like she HAS to resign. Due process will resolve the matter, one way or the other. Let the State bring a suit against her and a judge make the decision. If she doesn't want to resign, that is her prerogative.

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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

ANY police officer convicted of DWI would be fired. If a police officer was arrested for DWI SHE would be the one prosecuting the case. I just don't think it would be right for her to prosecute a police officer who would be immediately fired for something she herself has done and just because she is higher up the chain she gets away with it.

She's not "getting away with it" because she is higher up the chain. She is an elected official. Many, many elected officials engage in things that would get them fired, but it doesn't work that way. For every elected position there is a process for removing that person from office. There is also a procedure for her "firing" comes through the political/legal process.

You're right - cops would be fired for DUI. We don't need to demand they quit because the process takes care of itself. This will too.

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Just have to say.. our mayor has been arrested for a DUI (while a mayor .. previous term), and they reelected him.. rofl.

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Id vote for someone who had a "normal" DUI- like, barely blew over . It happens. This woman has a drinking problem. It's different. To me anyway.

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"Potter75" wrote:

Id vote for someone who had a "normal" DUI- like, barely blew over . It happens. This woman has a drinking problem. It's different. To me anyway.

What is so horribly funny, is this was his third time being pulled over.. And second DUII... not sure what two I's mean, so thought I would clarify. The last time he was driving a motorcycle and crashed into someone's pickup. He refused to give blood, so who knows what the level was.

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Rivergallery, in Oregon they call it a DUII regardless of the intoxicant.

The 3x the legal limit is a big red flag for me. I am not sure if I would say she should stay if it was barely over, but that far over is huge. I hope the local government can get her out of there through some kind of legislative policy