NH Rep Steps Down After Second Arrest Yesterday

A New Hampshire State Representative has resigned after being arrested for Driving after Suspension or Revocation and other charges. The state rep, Gary Wheaton, is a Republican representing the Seabrook area. According to a Hampton Police Department press release, he was speeding on Route 1 northbound in Hampton, NH, yesterday morning.

Gary Wheaton after his first arrest last September in Londonderry, NH.

The press release states that at, approximately 8:55 AM, an officer monitoring traffic spotted the speeding vehicle and directed it to pull over. As the officer caught up to the offender, he was advised by dispatch that the owner had a suspended license.

Upon speaking with the driver, he could not produce a driver’s license or other identification. The driver did identify himself as Gary Wheaton, the registered owner of the vehicle, however. The officer then proceeded to arrest Wheaton. On the way to the Hampton Police Department, Wheaton told the officer that he was a state representative on his way to the State House.

The release also states that, once at the police department, Wheaton’s identification was confirmed and he was released on a summons. He was charged with Driving After Revocation or Suspension, Speeding, and Traffic Control Devices. The last charge generally comes from disobeying a stop sign, light signal or yield sign.

According to several news outlets, the license suspension stems from an arrest last September in Londonderry, New Hampshire. The Londonderry police log shows the arrest took place at 12:26 AM on September 18, 2010. Wheaton refused a blood test to check his alcohol level and was taken into custody. He was charged with Driving Under the Influence and was released on Personal Recognizance Bail.

Wheaton lost his license for 60 days during his arraignment at Derry District Court earlier this year. The original DUI charge was dropped and, instead, he pleaded guilty to reckless endangerment. News outlets are quoting Wheaton as saying, “The original offense, in my opinion, was a very unfortunate stop inside of a parking lot. I have a receipt from the restaurant that said I had three drinks in three hours, so I definitely wasn’t drunk.”

Wheaton announced his resignation yesterday afternoon and will end his time in office at the next session on April 13, 2011. He is scheduled to answer to yesterday’s charges on May 11.

To view the police log including his initial arrest in Londonderry, click here.