NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) – New Hanover County Commissioner Brian Berger was in court Wednesday for a DWI he was charged with in Dec. of 2012. This was his first public appearance since being reinstated on the New Hanover Board of Commissioners after fellow board members voted to remove him.
The trial was continued for a fourth time. While in the courtroom, Berger sat quietly and read from what appeared to be a Bible.
District Attorney Ben David said the case was continued for several reasons. He says it will allow the court to bring in the officer that actually arrested Berger on Dec. 18, 2012, who has since moved to New Jersey.
It will also give the court a chance to bring in a visiting judge that will have no bias or prior knowledge of the case. Finally, it will give a crime lab in Raleigh a chance to finish testing Berger's blood to see if there were any drugs in his system.
"This is a priority case," said David. "We are absolutely committed to getting swift justice, and not just severe justice, it is going to be done before the year anniversary of the arrest, if you look at the more than 3,000 DWI cases that are pending in the 5th District its fairly typical that it takes about a year to get to trial."
The case will now go before a judge on Dec. 10.
WECT.com also talked to Brian Berger about being reinstated on the New Hanover County Board of Commissioners.
When asked what Berger's response was to the claims by Chairman Woody White about considering working to have Berger removed again, Berger said that for legal reasons, he couldn't comment. He says he looks forward to the day he can comment, saying, "the public should know the truth."
He also said that Thursday, when he takes his seat back for the first time, he hopes his fellow commissioners treat him with respect. He says moving forward he will do his best to fulfil his election promises.
"I'm certainly going to be there, and be present, and vote and pursue issues based on my conscious that are consistent with the promises I made when I campaigned and I know most elected officials don't do that, I'm trying to be different," said Berger.