New video shows commissioner's arrest
Stacy Johnson's attorney says she was texting, not drunk
Move evidence continues to be released in the arrest of Nassau County Commissioner Stacy Johnson on Friday night.
The 38-year-old Board of Commissioners chairwoman was arrested in her driveway on a charge of driving under the influence. Dashcam video released Wednesday shows her arrest by Nassau County deputies.
Authorities were called to her home after a driver reported seeing her swerving all over the road.
Johnson's attorney, Gary Baker, said Wednesday that Johnson was driving from Sliders Seaside Grill in Fernandina Beach to her home in Yulee, which is about an 11-mile trip.
Baker said Johnson admits to swerving off the road, but not because she was drunk. Rather, because she was texting, he said.
UNCUT: 911 calls | Audio of traffic stop, arrest
The new video shows Johnson's confrontation with deputies. They talk in her front yard for several minutes, then after refusing to complete a field sobriety test, Johnson is placed in handcuffs and taken to the back of a patrol car. The camera in that car recorded Johnson's voice shouting at the deputies.
"I'll take a field sobriety test. I'll walk. I'll take my heels off," Johnson said. "I'm tired. I've (expletive) worked all day. I'll take my heels off. I'm not afraid. I hate this job. I hate this county."
The Nassau County Sheriff's Office was alerted to Johnson's SUV when another driver called 911 and reported seeing Johnson's car swerving off the road.
Caller: "Hi. I'm on Ameila Island Parkway and I'm behind a car that almost -- he's been weaving in and out of traffic and he almost hit a car going head on. I think he might be drunk. ... Oh, he's -- oh, I'm sorry. He's like pulling up into traffic."
Dispatcher: "Where's he at now?"
Caller: "We are just -- oh, he just hit the curb, the median on (State Road) A1A."
Dispatcher: "Is he still all over the road?"
Caller: "Yeah. He's going in between the lanes right now. Oh."
Dispatcher: "What did he do this time?"
Caller: "He keeps going over this middle line."
Baker said after looking at the evidence, he doesn't believe it's very clear whether Johnson was drunk or texting when she drove off the road.
"If they had had a closeup on her, put the lights on her where you could clearly see, is she weaving? Is she swaying as the police officer says in his police report?" Baker said. "It doesn't appear to me that she was."
Baker did say Johnson has considered resigning from the county commission.
"She doesn't want to resign because that may be some indication in some people's mind that she's guilty of something," Baker said. "On the other hand, all this attention is not very flattering. It causes her concern about the way -- you know, she's got three daughters."
Johnson's next court date is set for July 2.
Baker said they do plan to fight the charges.
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