Texas State Senator Charles Schwertner Arrested for DWI in Austin

Texas State Senator Charles Schwertner was arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated (DWI) in Austin early Tuesday morning, according to Travis County Jail records.[0] At 2:12 a.m., the Austin Police Department took the 52 year-old into custody and transported them to the Travis County Jail.[1] He was allowed to leave after paying a $3,000 personal bond.[2]

Schwertner is chairman of the Senate's Business and Commerce Committee, which is scheduled to meet at 11:00 a.m. On Tuesday, there will be a discussion regarding the continuing remodelling of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas market.[3] He is also a member of the Finance and State Affairs Committees.

The arrest comes after Schwertner faced allegations of sending sexually explicit messages and photos of his genitals to a University of Texas graduate student in 2018.[4] His office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Texas Tribune, however his attorney Perry Minton told the Austin American-Statesman: “I met with Senator Schwertner very early this morning directly after his unfortunate arrest. He was certainly humble and embarrassed by his circumstances but he was clear-eyed, sober and making good sense. Because of this, we’ll be interested in the discovery once it becomes available.”[5]

An investigation conducted by the university stated that the senator had not been cooperative and could not definitively prove that Schwertner sent the texts; however, it did not exonerate him of any wrongdoing.[6] Following the sexual harassment allegation, Schwertner voluntarily gave up his chairmanship of the Senate’s Health and Human Services Committee to work on other issues in the Legislature and spend more time with his family.[6] The Lieutenant Governor, Dan Patrick, who presides over the Senate, monitored the investigation closely.[6]

Senator Schwertner chairs both the Senate Committee on Business and Commerce and the Senate Committee on Constitutional Issues. He is a member of the Senate Committees on Education, Finance, State Affairs, the Legislative Budget Board, and the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission.

This story is still unfolding.[7] Stay tuned for updates on this developing story.[8]

0. “Texas State Senator Charles Schwertner arrested for DWI” FOX 7 Austin, 7 Feb. 2023, https://www.fox7austin.com/news/texas-state-senator-dwi-charles-schwertner-arrested

1. “Texas State Senator Arrested for Drunk Driving” The Daily Beast, 5 Feb. 2023, https://www.thedailybeast.com/texas-sen-charles-j-schwertner-arrested-for-drunk-driving

2. “State Senator Charles Schwertner Arrested For DWI By Austin Police” WTAW, 7 Feb. 2023, https://wtaw.com/state-senator-charles-schwertner-arrested-for-dwi-by-austin-police/

3. “Texas State Sen. Charles Schwertner Arrested in Austin on Drunk Driving Charge” The Texan, 6 Feb. 2023, https://thetexan.news/texas-state-sen-charles-schwertner-arrested-in-austin-for-drunk-driving

4. “Texas state senator arrested for drunk driving” Fox News, 7 Feb. 2023, https://www.foxnews.com/politics/texas-state-senator-charles-schwertner-arrested-drunk-driving

5. “Charles Schwertner, Texas senator, arrested, charged with DWI” Austin American-Statesman, 7 Feb. 2023, https://www.statesman.com/story/news/state/2023/02/07/charles-schwertner-arrest-texas-senator-dwi-travis-county-jail/69880258007

6. “State Sen. Charles Schwertner arrested on suspicion of drunken driving” KSAT San Antonio, 7 Feb. 2023, https://www.ksat.com/news/texas/2023/02/07/state-sen-charles-schwertner-arrested-on-suspicion-of-drunk-driving/

7. “State Sen. Charles J. Schwertner arrested, charged with driving while intoxicated” KVUE.com, 7 Feb. 2023, https://www.kvue.com/article/news/crime/sen-charles-j-schwertner-arrested-charged-with-dwi/269-37dfda00-9b72-493b-8adc-77c49fa9f9ce

8. “Georgetown senator Charles Schwertner arrested for DWI Tuesday morning” Yahoo News, 7 Feb. 2023, https://news.yahoo.com/georgetown-senator-charles-schwertner-arrested-153646990.html