A man who has filed for a seat as an alderman in one Tennessee community is scheduled to first face a jury before the voters have a say. He was charged with a third drunk driving offense, along with possession of controlled narcotics. His trial was scheduled for late October, right before the November 4th election day.
The charges stem from an incident that occurred in March 2012. The 37-year-old man was said to have been driving his vehicle in an erratic manner. A sheriff's deputy said that she had to take measures to avoid a collision. The deputy then conducted a traffic stop immediately after the near-collision.
The deputy alleges that the driver appeared to be under the influence and even acknowledged ingesting several controlled medications. The officer apparently carried out a search of his person. She says that she found prescription medications on him. The deputy also asserted that the man could not successfully complete sobriety tests carried out at the scene.
The driver reportedly consented to blood alcohol testing, though those results were not included in the recent report. If the state were to gain a conviction on the drunk driving charge, he could be faced with a mandatory four-month jail term due to his apparent prior record. He was permitted to run for election to public office because he has not been convicted of any felony offenses, which would bar him from seeking elective office. Just as with any other individual facing criminal charges in Tennessee, this man will have a full opportunity to defend himself at trial. It remains to be seen how this case will be resolved and what effect it may have on the man's bid for local elective office.
Source: timesnews.net, "Alderman candidate faces trial on drug possession, DUI charges prior to election", Jeff Bobo, Oct. 21, 2014