HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — A Connecticut lawmaker arrested after a crash near the state capitol could see her drunken driving charge wiped from her record in one year if she completes a probation program.
Rep. Robin Comey, a Branford Democrat, appeared Friday in Hartford Superior Court, where a judge approved her application for the state’s impaired driving intervention program for first-time offenders.
Hartford police said Comey’s blood-alcohol level was almost twice the legal limit on March 16 when she crashed her car on Capitol Avenue after leaving a restaurant. Surveillance video shows her car striking a parked vehicle and flipping onto its roof.
Police body camera video also shows Comey failing sobriety tests after the crash. She was charged with driving under the influence.
“This is hard stuff. Life is hard stuff,” Comey said Friday after she faced a judge.
Since her arrest, Comey’s attorney said she’s completed an intensive in-patient program and is currently in an outpatient program.
“This is a path forward to earn a dismissal — rather than go through the entire court process, and possibly a trial,” said Daniel C. Ford, an attorney who does not represent Comey. “The program is between 10 and 15 classes. It’s an education program, essentially. They can order additional treatment if they deem it’s necessary.”
The day after the crash, House Speaker Matt Ritter, a fellow Democrat, removed Comey from her leadership and committee assignments, saying someone could have been seriously hurt and urging Comey to focus on her health.
Comey said she hopes to return in this current legislative session ending June 7.
“I love this work,” she said. “I really want to return as soon as I can.”
Ritter told News 8 on Friday that he’s proud of the work Comey’s put in.
“Once she has fulfilled her legal obligations, I look forward to discussing her role at the capitol and assignments going forward,” Ritter said.
To complete the state’s impaired driving intervention program, Comey must not have any new DUI or motor vehicle arrests in the period.