A Gloucester County mayor charged with DWI is speaking out publicly for the first time since his arrest.
On August 1, police say East Greenwich Township Mayor Fred Grant was caught speeding down Kings Highway while drunk. He was arrested and charged with a DWI as well as driving 91 miles per hour in a 45-mile per hour zone.
Nearly two weeks later, the Mayor addressed the charges during a public town meeting on Tuesday. Despite numerous calls from other committee members as well as the public for his resignation, Grant did not resign from his position. Instead he apologized for his actions.
“I’ve embarrassed myself and my family,” said Mayor Grant. “I will follow the due process.”
The reaction from the crowd, consisting of both supporters and detractors, was mixed.
“Nobody in here has ever walked on water,” said one man. “The man made a mistake and he admitted it. Let justice go on. Leave him alone.”
“Maybe you should go sit with a person who has lost someone while someone else was drunk driving,” said one woman. “Shame on you.”
Supporters of the mayor argue the calls for his resignation are nothing more than a Republican attempt to push a Democrat out of office. Township Committee member William Bumbernick, who is a Republican, denies this however.
“This is about concern for our residents,” said Bumbernick. “This is about concern for the safety of the people in town.”
Two men who say they were with the Mayor the night of his arrest, claimed he wasn’t drunk.
“Mayor Grant was not drunk,” said one man, causing a mixed reaction from the crowd.
“He was not drunk!” said another. “He had a few drinks in him but he wasn’t drunk.”
During the meeting, the Mayor claimed he would continue to work to regain the trust of the town.