Ex-Corbin mayor Scott Williamson vowed to fight public drunkenness charges shortly after being arrested May 22.
But while pleading his client’s innocence at an arraignment hearing Tuesday morning, attorney Paul Croley said he plans to file a motion designed to toss out a potentially damaging piece of evidence in the case.
Croley entered a not guilty plea on behalf of Williamson in front of Whitley District Judge Cathy Prewitt at the hearing. Prewitt also agreed to seal the results of a blood test performed at Baptist Regional Medical Center shortly after his arrest, pending a hearing on the issue in July.
“We are going to defend this vigorously,” Croley said before the arraignment. “I’m going to find out what kind of evidence they’ve got against him and I’ll be asking that they produce that.”
Williamson was contacted on Monday, but referred all questions to Croley.
“I really can’t say any more about it,” Williamson said. “My attorney is handling that now.”
Williamson was arrested in the early morning hours while walking on Gordon Hill Pike. He said he was going to stay at a friend’s house after attending a cookout earlier in the evening.
According to a police report, Williamson was covered in grass and had a scrape on his arm where he had apparently fallen while walking. The report, filed by officer Brandon White, also said Williamson was “very unsteady” on his feet, “had red, glassy eyes” and nearly fell over several times before being arrested.
Williamson denies he was intoxicated and said he never staggered during questioning and was never given a field sobriety test. A Breathalyzer test was inconclusive, he added. Instead, he claims White arrested him as retaliation for a “speeding incident” over which the two disagreed two years ago.
Williamson was never taken to the Whitley County Jail because he complained of chest pains while at the police station. He was transported by ambulance to BRMC for examination.
A subpoena was issued to the hospital on May 26 for results of a blood alcohol test done as part of a routine blood exam when Williamson was admitted. The results, obtained by the News Journal, show a blood-alcohol level of .175 – more than twice the legal limit of .08.
Corbin Police Chief Carson Mullins said he’s reviewed the circumstances of the arrest and found nothing improper and no evidence of wrongdoing by White. Mullins said the department was responding to a citizen phone complaint received at the police 911-dispatch center.
Williamson was first elected mayor in 1994 and served for nearly 11 years until he resigned. He is now an executive director in the state Cabinet for Health and Family Services. He said his position in state government would not be jeopardized by the arrest.
Prewitt set a pre-trial conference in the case for July 19 at 1:00 p.m.
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