SACRAMENTO – Sen. Ben Hueso, D-San Diego, who also represents Imperial County, was arrested early Friday morning on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol.
Officers observed Hueso driving the wrong way on 15th Street near X street in Sacramento about 2:24 a.m. this morning, California Highway Patrol Officer Julie Powell said.
â€œHe was going in the wrong direction,â€ Powell said.
The officers reported seeing the vehicle make a u-turn and pulled the driver over at a parking lot at the intersection of 15th and X.
Powell said officers identified the driver as Hueso and said he was alone in the car. Hueso showed â€œobjective signs and symptomsâ€ of being under the influence of alcohol and was given a field sobriety test.
He was arrested shortly after, taken in without incident and booked into Sacramento County jail at 3:27 a.m., she said. Jail records show he was booked with a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher at 3:27 a.m. Powell said the CHP would not release the precise blood alcohol reading. He was released from jail late Friday morning.
The arrest took place hours after Hueso had taken part in a Latino Caucus dinner at the Il Fornaio restaurant honoring Latino legislators who are leaving office.
â€œThat event was over around 9 p.m., so there is a big gap there,â€ said caucus spokesman Roger Salazar. Some lawmakers, including Hueso, returned to the Capitol after the dinner. A picture of them with drinks in their hands was posted on Twitter by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, D-San Diego.
First elected to the Legislature in 2010, Hueso traded the Assembly for the Senate last year, claiming a seat left vacant when Rep. Juan Vargas, D-San Diego, won a spot in Congress.
After his release from jail around noon today, Hueso released a statement apologizing for the incident:
â€œI am truly and profoundly sorry for the unacceptably poor personal judgment which I demonstrated last night. As someone who cares deeply about the public safety, I sincerely apologize to my family, my constituents and my colleagues in the Senate for breaching the trust theyâ€™ve all placed in me. I accept complete personal responsibility for my actions and any punishments that ultimately come my way as a result of this incident. I will also engage in immediate, corrective actions to ensure this kind of personal conduct is never repeated.â€