Vancouver councillor pleads guilty to drinking and driving
Tim Stevenson has no plans to step down
Vancouver Coun. Tim Stevenson said he has no plans to step down after pleading guilty to a drunk driving charge on Monday morning.
Stevenson outlined what happened in the May 2006 incidentduring a press conference and said he's very "embarrassed and humiliated."
"I feel a sense of shame about what happened," he said.
The former MLA admitted he drank3½ pints of beer over two to three hours in a Davie Street bar in the downtown, then tried to drive home eight blocks away.
He said he made the mistake of getting behind the wheel when he could have called a cab or easily walked home.
He said he was stopped by police and asked to take a sobriety test, which showed a blood-alcohol level of .14 — nearly twice the legal limit under the Criminal Code.
"I would like to apologize to my family, my friends, my colleagues, and to those who have supported me in my political career and my church for the disappointment and embarrassment that the incident would cause them," Stevenson said.
He said he didn't mention the charge to anyone but his partner and a lawyer, for fear of the consequences. His Vision Vancouver colleagues only found out about it last Thursday.
"I think I was in denial about this for some time. I hoped the entire issue would somehow go away or disappear."
Mayor Sam Sullivan said he was disappointed to learn an opposition city councillor pleaded guilty to drinking and driving, andissued a statement, saying he trusts Stevenson will seek counselling and work against drinking and driving in the community.
Sullivan said Stevenson's political future will be up to voters.
Stevenson is a United Church clergyman and the only openly gay Vancouver city councillor.
Inthe 1996provincial election,he wonthe Vancouver-Burrard seat for the NDP, later serving as the Minister for Employment and Investment from 2000-2001.
He lost the 2001 election by 11 votes and was elected to Vancouver city council as part of the Vision Vancouver slate the following year.