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ARLINGTON, Va. - Officers say he crashed a city-owned Ford Explorer. He blew a 0.19, more than twice the legal limit. He went to jail.
He s also the Chief of Police.
Less than 12 hours after his arrest, the City of Alexandria placed Police Chief David P. Baker on paid administrative leave pending an internal investigation into why such a high-profile officer would allegedly drink and drive.
Arlington County Police say Baker clipped another vehicle at the entrance ramp to Interstate 66 at North Fairfax Drive just after 11pm Saturday night. The driver of the second vehicle did go to a local hospital for minor injuries.
Baker was released on his own recognizance Sunday morning but a woman who answered the phone at his home told Fox 5 he was unavailable for comment.
This is a sad day for us, Alexandria Mayor William Euille announced at a Sunday press conference. He and other city leaders announced the city s second-highest ranking officer, Executive Deputy Police Chief Earl Cook, will now serve as acting chief.
Cook says within the police department, reaction has been understandably surprised. I m surprised also, is the most I can say. This is behavior I ve never seen, certainly never been a part of his career or ethics.
Baker has been with the police force for nearly 20 years and chief for the last three. He oversees more than 480 employees.
Baker s future is now in the hands of City Manager Jim Hartmann, who announced he s launched an independent investigation. When asked if Baker s career was over, Hartmann said, "I'm not prepared to say that right now. We're looking at all the facts of the case. This is a very serious situation.
Alexandria s Sheriff Dana Lawhorne didn t speak at the news conference, but came to show support for his longtime friend. "I've talked to him and he's obviously upset, concerned. He's an honorable man. It s just not like him.