Rep. Youngblood charged with aggravated DWI

Rep. Monica Youngblood

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — State Rep. Monica Youngblood was arrested on a charge of aggravated DWI early Sunday at a sobriety checkpoint in Northwest Albuquerque, according to a criminal complaint.

Police say Youngblood, 41, refused a mandatory breath test after performing poorly on field sobriety tests conducted when she was stopped at the checkpoint on westbound Paseo del Norte near Golf Course. She said she had not had anything to drink and was headed home from a friend’s house, but police said her speech was slurred and her eyes were bloodshot, according to the complaint filed in Metropolitan Court.

She was arrested on an aggravated DWI charge and released from jail without bond before seeing a judge, according to Metro Court and jail records.

In 2015, Youngblood co-sponsored a bill that, had it passed, would have stopped the common practice of releasing those arrested on an aggravated DWI charge from jail without bond before they see a judge.

In a statement Sunday, Youngblood said that as a legislator she has always taken drinking and driving seriously.

“While I regret the situation altogether, I most definitely regret not taking the breathalyzer test,” she wrote. “I look forward to bringing this matter to a swift and just conclusion.”

She did not answer additional questions.

Youngblood was booked into the county jail at 4:44 a.m. and ordered released at 5:17 a.m., according to court records. She was charged with aggravated DWI, a charge that can be applied when a driver refuses to take a breath test or tests at more than twice the .08 legal limit.

She is set to see a judge in Metropolitan Court on June 13.

Youngblood has represented House District 68 in Northwest Albuquerque since 2013 and has voted repeatedly to increase penalties related to DWI.

She is seeking re-election as the only Republican candidate in the district, though she is set to face a Democratic challenger in the fall.