Rains County Justice of the Peace arrested for driving while intoxicated

EMORY, Texas (KETK) – The Texas Department of Public Safety said that Rains County Justice of the Peace Robert Jenkins Franklin was arrested for driving while intoxicated last Thursday.

East Texas town loses second police chief in 2 years

On Wednesday, March 20, a Rains County Sheriff’s Office deputy was dispatched to a suspicious vehicle that was reported by a concerned caller because the driver had reportedly been sitting inside for an hour with the brake lights on.

The driver was identified by the deputy as Robert Jenkins Franklin, 44 of Alba, according to DPS. A DPS probable cause affidavit states the deputy observed several open alcoholic beverage containers in the truck and smelled a strong odor of alcohol on Franklin’s breath.

Robert Jenkins Franklin. Mugshot courtesy of the Rains County Sheriff’s Office.
Robert Jenkins Franklin. Mugshot courtesy of the Rains County Sheriff’s Office.

According to officials, the deputy then contacted Rains County Sheriff Michael Hopkins and a sergeant because of Franklin’s position as Justice of the Peace for Rains County.

At 11:25 p.m. that night, a DPS trooper was contacted by Rains County Sheriff’s Office Dispatch. Sheriff Hopkins had requested that the trooper go to the scene to conduct field sobriety tests on Franklin and to arrest him if he was found to be intoxicated.

Texas criminal appeals court takes man off death row over intellectual disability

The trooper arrived and contacted Franklin who was now standing and leaning against the end of his truck because he “was very unstable when not supported,” according to DPS.

“Franklin stated that he had received some bad news earlier in the day and he was just sitting in his truck on CR-2250 approximately one mile from his residence. The strong odor of an alcoholic beverage was coming from his breath and when he would speak, he was slurring his words. I
attempted to start the Standardized Field Sobriety Tests and Franklin quickly refused to do any testing,” the trooper said in a DPS document.

Franklin was then told that if he did not take the test that he would be arrested for driving while intoxicated because of “all other elements present” and that a warrant for his blood would be requested for testing, per the arrest affidavit.

Soon after the refusal to test, Sheriff Hopkins arrived at the scene and told the trooper that he’d like DPS to take possession of the call, according to the affidavit.

4 arrested for stealing pizzas, wings at gunpoint in East Texas

Franklin was then arrested by the DPS trooper for driving while intoxicated and Judge Eddie Northcutt was contacted to get a blood warrant.

The Rains County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that Franklin was bonded out of the Rains County Jail for $1,500.

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to KETK.com | FOX51.com.