Clark County Clerk Lynn Goya was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence in Boulder City late last year, according to records obtained by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
A blood test found that Goya, a Democrat running for reelection, had a blood alcohol level of .116 when she was arrested Dec. 9, police records show. Nevada’s legal limit to drive is .08.
Goya, 63, told police she had one cocktail while attending a social event at the Red Rock Casino before getting behind the wheel of a blue Toyota Avalon sedan and driving close to 40 miles to her home in Boulder City, police records show.
She claimed the same on Friday, blaming any deficiencies behind the wheel that night on being tired and unable to use her right hand to drive due to a recent surgery.
“I learned my lesson that even one drink is too much, and it won’t happen again,” she said.
Las Vegas DUI defense attorney John Watkins said it’s unlikely that one drink would elevate Goya’s blood alcohol level as high as the test showed, but blood sample tests can produce erroneous results.
“There’s three possibilities,” he said. “One, she’s not truthful. Two, the sample itself was contaminated in the vial. The third would be if there was something that went awry at the lab itself.”
Boulder City police pulled over Goya near the intersection of Utah and Park Streets, less than a block from her home, while responding to a reckless driving complaint, according to an arrest report.
Officers reported smelling alcohol from inside Goya’s vehicle and described her as slurring her speech, smelling of alcohol and leaning on an officer for support while walking.
Goya, who was elected in 2014, was arrested at about 9:45 p.m. after she refused to take a field sobriety test. She was taken to the Henderson Detention Center on misdemeanor charges of DUI and failure to maintain a travel lane, jail records show.
Boulder City Municipal Court Judge Victor Miller ordered Goya to attend DUI school and a victim impact panel, court records show. Goya pleaded guilty to reckless driving in February.
Goya said she hopes her constituents will look past the arrest and judge her on the job she’s done in office.
“If this is the only thing that matters is something the voters will have to decide,” she said. “But I think in the clerk’s office we’ve done an excellent job and will continue to do an excellent job.”
Her opponent, Republican Minddie Lloyd, said Goya had an increased responsibility as an elected official to not drink and drive.
“Public officials are beholden to the very public they pledge to serve,” Lloyd said. “Endangering any segment of the public is disappointing and unacceptable.”