NC beach town leader charged with DWI

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Sunset Beach Mayor Pro-tem Mark Benton was arrested and charged with driving while impaired shortly after leaving a bar Wednesday night, according to an arrest report from the Sunset Beach Police Department.

According to the report, a caller alerted police that Benton, 61, was leaving a bar while intoxicated.

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The officer located Benton’s vehicle and followed him. The report states that Benton crossed the center line twice on Sunset Boulevard South and two more times after turning onto Northshore Drive West.

After performing a traffic stop and approaching Benton’s vehicle, the officer reported that there was a strong odor of alcohol, his eyes were red and glassy and he was slurring his speech.

Benton gave multiple breath samples with results ranging from .10 to .12, officials said. The legal limit is .08.

He also failed two field sobriety tests, according to authorities.

“I am ashamed and disgusted. I let down my town, I let down my wife and I let down my God,” Benton said when reached by phone Thursday morning. 

Benton declined further comment saying he needed to speak to his attorney first.

Copyright 2018 WECT. All rights reserved.  

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