NR Digital

Drunk with Power

by Kevin D. Williamson

Corrupt prosecutors abuse their authority in political vendettas

‘You’re going to be in jail, not me.” So said the powerful Texas prosecutor Rosemary Lehmberg to sheriff’s deputies who were in the process of booking her on drunk-driving charges after she was pulled over with an open bottle of vodka in her car and a blood-alcohol content nearly three times the legal limit. When Ms. Lehmberg demanded the removal of handcuffs (and, later, the restraints that deputies were obliged to place her in) as well as the return of her cell phone so that she could “call Greg” — that being Travis County sheriff Greg Hamilton, who, she assured her captors, would immediately set things right — deputies explained to the incoherent prosecutor that she had been arrested for drunk driving and was in the process of being booked. “That’s y’all’s problem, not mine,” she huffed. “I’m district attorney — get these cuffs off me!”

Deputies would later say that she physically assaulted them as well, though she was not charged with that crime. She was charged with, and convicted of, drunk driving. During the course of her prosecution, it was revealed that she had purchased more than $4,500 worth of vodka over 15 months, or about 25 gallons. (She favored Ciroc.) It once was customary for high-ranking prosecutors to resign from office upon being convicted of a crime and dispatched to jail (Ms. Lehmberg served about half of a 45-day sentence).

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