Councilman facing DWI charge to finish term but end campaign

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A New Orleans City Council member facing a drunk driving charge for the third time says he will finish out his term while undergoing inpatient addiction treatment, but he is suspending his campaign for another term on the council.

Jared Brossett, 39, is a district council member whose term ends in January. He had been running for a city-wide “at large” council post. The election is next month. The council voted Thursday to replace Brossett as chairman of the council’s budget panel, according to New Orleans news outlets.

“I have a disease. I want to get better,” Brossett’s emailed statement said. “I know that I need help, and I will engage the professional help that I need to be my best self.” He gave no details about where he will be treated.

Brossett is facing a driving while intoxicated charge after he was arrested early Monday. He entered a diversion program as an alternative to prosecution following his arrest in June 2020 after he crashed a city-owned vehicle. He pleaded no contest to reckless driving in Florida in 2006 after initially facing a DWI charge, The Times-Picayune’The New Orleans Advocate reported.

District council member Kristin Palmer is running for the same at-large post Brossett sought. In an unusual move, the two had endorsed each other for the post while urging a vote against another candidate, J.P. Morrell, a popular former state legislator from a well-known political family. Palmer issued a statement Thursday expressing sympathy for Brossett.

“I’m proud to have Jared’s endorsement because I believe that we are all better than our worst moments,” the statement said. “Jared is going to get better.”

Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

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