Jared Brossett suspends campaign for At-Large City Council race following DWI arrest
Councilmember Jared Brossett announced Thursday that he will suspend his campaign activities for his bid for the second At-Large position, but will complete his term for District D following his second drunk driving arrest in 16 months.
“I am going to enter an inpatient center for treatment. I have a disease. I want to get better,” Brossett said.
Brossett has been absent from the council since his arrest Monday and was removed from his role as Chair of the Budget Committee Thursday. Brossett has also missed several debates and candidate forums.
“Over the next few weeks, my staff will ensure continuity in constituent services, and upon my return, I will shepherd a smooth transition,” said Brossett.
The election for the second At-Large position and several other city roles takes place on Nov. 13. Brossett was running against former State Sen. JP Morrell, Councilmember Kristin Gisleson Palmer and Xavier University faculty member Bart Everson.
The current council will serve until Jan. 10, 2022.
Around 2:30 a.m. Monday, New Orleans Police officers were flagged down and told that a man was sleeping inside a running vehicle in the Brother's Food Mart parking lot on Elysian Fields Avenue. Police found Brossett asleep behind the wheel of his 2021 Lexus while the engine was running. After smelling alcohol on his breath, police arrested Brossett and transported him to a DWI testing center, where he asked for a lawyer and failed a field sobriety test.
Brossett was booked into the holding center at about 5:15 a.m. Monday, according to OPSO's online jail records, and was released from custody at about 9 a.m.
In a rare political move, Brossett and Councilmember Kristin Gisleson Palmer endorsed each other last week as they ran for the same seat on the council. The pair are both termed out of their current districts and attempted to dissuade voters from electing former State Sen. JP Morrell for the At-Large Position.
In a debate held Wednesday, Palmer refused to speak on her endorsement for Brossett until he revealed what he planned to do with his campaign.
Danielle Duplessis-Hammond, the Orleans Parish Chief Deputy Registrar, said that candidates can withdraw from an election at any time.
The location of Monday's incident is less than a mile away from the site of his 2020 DWI arrest, where Brossett drove a city-owned 2019 Chevrolet Tahoe over the neutral ground of Elysian Fields and hit an oncoming car. Brossett eventually pleaded not guilty to the drunk-driving charge, but a bystander filmed the aftermath of the crash, which showed Brossett slurring his words and appearing incoherent.
Five months ago, WDSU reported that Brossett reached an agreement with the city to pay $753 monthly for the next five years to cover the cost of the $45,175 city vehicle.
In an interview with Louisiana Considered earlier this month, Brossett said the 2020 drunk driving case was resolved and that he had voluntarily completed a six-month course for addictive behavior at Ochsner. In 2006, Brossett was also arrested for drunk driving.
Brossett will face Magistrate Judge Bridgid Collins Oct. 25, at 3 p.m.