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Judge Dismisses DWI Charges That Forced Former FAA Administrator To Resign

Former Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Administrator Randy Babbitt.
Alex Brandon
Former Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Administrator Randy Babbitt.

A judge has thrown out drunken driving charges against Jerome "Randy" Babbitt, a former Federal Aviation Administration chief.

If you remember, it was that arrest and that DWI charge that forced Babbitt to resign his position last December.

The AP reports that during a trial, yesterday, Babbitt's attorneys played a video that showed police stopped Babbitt after he made a normal left turn into a parking lot.

General District Judge Ian O'Flaherty called the "traffic stop a 'hunch' and dismissed the case before prosecutors could even present evidence of Babbitt's alleged intoxication."

Babbitt's attorney said Babbitt had no more than three drinks at a party and that his blood alcohol level was below the .08 legal limit in Virginia.

When Babbitt resigned he position, he issued a statement saying he was "unwilling to let anything cast a shadow on the outstanding work done 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by my colleagues at the FAA."

He told the AP that he did not regret resigning.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.