DALLAS - A rising star in the state Democratic Party was defiant Tuesday night when police arrested her for an alleged drunk driving crash.
State Rep. Victoria Neave was taken into custody around 11:30 p.m. after police said she crashed her BMW into a tree near the intersection of Abrams Parkway and La Vista Drive in the Lakewood area of Dallas.
According to her arrest report, the responding officers noticed Neave had bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and the smell of alcohol on her breath. They also described her as unsteady and unbalanced.
Someone was with Neave, an unidentified man who first claimed the car was his. The story then changed, and Neave "confirmed she was driving by stating with slurred speech, 'I didn't hit anything.'"
She refused to take a field sobriety test and at one point told officers, "I love you and I will fight for you and I'm invoking my 5th Amendment rights," the report states.
The 36-year-old was ultimately taken to the hospital to have her blood drawn and then booked into the Lew Sterrett Jail.
Neave is a Democrat who represents parts of Dallas, Mesquite and Garland. She was named Freshman of the Year by the Texas House Democratic Caucus after her bill to solicit funding for rape kit tests was passed. She got national attention for a brief hunger strike against the so-called sanctuary cities bill and also appeared on Good Day promoting legislation to clear a backlog of rape kits.
Ironically, on Saturday she appeared at a distracted driving event in Mesquite sponsored by AT&T. She tested a driving simulator meant to help people see the dangers of distracted driving.
Neave is also a defense attorney. Her firm's website describes, among other things, "ways to fight DWI charges."
A more contrite Neave apologized on Facebook Wednesday afternoon.
“I am so grateful that no one was hurt,” she said. “I am deeply sorry and will accept full responsibility for my actions and will work to make this right.”
Neave was released on $500 bond within a few hours. She was allowed to leave the jail through an exit away from the news media. Her office has not yet returned calls for comment.
In a statement, the Dallas County Democratic Party Chair said they look forward to speaking with Neave regarding the facts of her case. She is expected to be present for the special legislative session.