House minority leader denies driving while under the influence

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – House minority leader Robert Watson says he "vehemently" denies driving under the influence last Friday night in Connecticut. Watson was arrested at a DWI checkpoint in East Haven, Connecticut.

Watson was arrested at 10 pm Friday at a DWI checkpoint where all motorists were stopped. According to an East Haven, Connecticut police report, Watson smelled of alcohol and admitted to drinking two-and-a-half beers at a friend's house.

The report says Watson slurred his speech as he was given a series of field sobriety tests which he performed poorly. According to the report Watson started the test before instructed to do so, and did not make heel to toe contact when instructed to take nine steps.

A breath test showed him well below Connecticut's drunk driving threshold of .08 but in his pocket police found a bag of marijuana and a pipe. They charged him with marijuana possession, possession of drug paraphernalia and driving under the influence.

Watson released a statement in which he called himself a "safe and sober operator" and denied the dui charge. He said he would have more to say on the situation at the quote "proper time."

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