SOUTH KINGSTOWN – Over the weekend, police arrested former state Minority Leader Rep. Robert Watson (R- Dist. 30, East Greenwich, West Greenwich) for possession of marijuana, his second offense in less than a year after police discovered an open Natural Ice beer can, two Corona Extra beer bottles, and a pipe and small plastic bag containing traces of marijuana in his vehicle.
Watson, 51 of 103 S Pierce Road, East Greenwich was arrested on Saturday, Jan. 21 at 11:53 p.m., after police found his vehicle stuck in the snow with a flat tire. Just before midnight police responded to the Washington County Vets at 4263 Tower Hill Road where a snow plower reported that an intoxicated man driving on a flat tire almost hit him while he was plowing the parking lot. The responding officer Patrolman Joseph Macrae found the East Greenwich representative standing beside his white Volvo S-80, which appeared stuck in the snow with the front driver's side tire missing from the rim. Watson stated he had no idea what he had struck to cause the damage or how long he had been driving on the rim of his vehicle. Later police located the tire at the intersection of Tower Hill Road and Saugatucket Road. The officer instructed Watson to sit in his vehicle while waiting for a second police officer to assist.
When Officer Trevor Richmond arrived, the two police officers approached Watson in his vehicle and found him holding a can of Natural Ice Beer.
As Watson handed over the beer reluctantly, he stated to police, “Do you know who I am? I'm the EG rep.”
According to police reports, Watson slurred his words, stumbled while exiting the vehicle and swore at police.
As Watson exited his vehicle, police observed a pipe used to smoke marijuana sitting on the front driver's side floor board. Inside the vehicle, police found a clear sandwich bag containing marijuana.
During processing, when police told Watson that he was arrested for possession of marijuana and not drunk driving this time, he stated, “Shut up! You go your guy!”
He was released from the police station at 4:20 a.m.
“He behaved poorly. He used fowl language and wasn't cooperative once at the station,” South Kingstown Police Captain Jeffrey Allen said. “For a member of the BAR and a representative of East Greenwich, he should have behaved more accordingly.”
Local news reports Watson checked himself into a rehab clinic.
This is the East Greenwich Republican's second offense this year. Earlier last April, Connecticut police arrested Watson for driving under the influence and possession of marijuana. He pleaded not guilty, but a drug test revealed traces of cocaine and marijuana in his system. He was later asked to step down as Minority Leader in the General Assembly.
Watson was initially elected to the General Assembly in 1989 as state senator. Since 1992, he was been serving as state representative. He was elected minority leader in November 1998, but was asked to step down this year after new of his Connecticut DUI broke.
South Kingstown Police issued Watson a summons for possession of marijuana [first offense]. He will appear in Fourth District Court on Feb. 2 at 9 a.m.