Murrieta, California mayor Alan Long, whose comments on unaccompanied minors fueled a storm of protests against the frightened children arriving on school buses, was arrested on “suspicion of driving under the influence causing injury” after he crashed his car and injured four cheerleaders last Thursday night, according to local new source KTLA-5. By Monday, due to the fallout, he had decided to resign from mayoral office, effectively handing his re-election bid to his opponent.
Long was driving a full-sized pickup truck when he crashed into the back of a car carrying four young girls who had just left a pep rally. The young women, all minors age 14-17, sustained moderate to major injuries and were all hospitalized.
Police say that Long’s field sobriety tests led them to believe that he was intoxicated, even though his (inadmissable) breathalyzer results registered at .07 and .08, the latter being the legal threshold for alcohol intoxication according to the law. For his part, the mayor says he wasn’t drunk, and apologized to the injured teenagers. He is currently facing a DUI charge. He was also facing a re-election bid in November, scheduled before his December court date handling the DUI matter. Long will remain on the ballot for the upcoming City Council elections in November, and told reporters that he expects to be fully exonerated.
Long made national headlines in July after comments he made launched anti-immigrant groups into action.
“We have been informed that 140 immigrants will be arriving as early as tomorrow,” Long said at a press conference. “This is a failure to enforce federal law at the federal level,” long also said in a statement later.
The next day local Tea Party groups organized a mob of protesters to surround and block federal buses, waving signs and yelling angry anti-immigrant slogans, forcing buses carrying families and migrant children to turn around.
[Image Credit: ABC News]