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San Antonio reacts to news of return of Councilman Clayton Perry

City Councilman Clayton Perry returned to the City Council Chamber on Thursday, January 12, after a nearly two-month sabbatical during which he was charged with hitting and driving under the influence. In a statement read from a dais at the start of Thursday’s meeting, Perry tried to reassure voters and other council members that he will work to ensure this “never happens again.”

“It has been a difficult couple of months, but I want to assure everyone that I have kept my promise made at the last meeting to comply with all relevant measures recommended by medical experts and will continue to do so,” Perry said.

14 drinks

Perry’s return comes weeks after he received drunk driving charges for his alleged involvement in a November 6, 2022 hit-and-run incident after he reportedly drank 14 alcoholic drinks at a Northside bar. Body camera footage captured by police shows Perry was found in his backyard, slurring his words.

The city council granted Perry a leave of absence at a November 14, 2022, meeting after his constituents asked the council not to remove Perry from his position, which was not even on the agenda at the time. Perry said he would seek rehab while on vacation.

“He should retire”

Mayor Ron Nirenberg was candid in his response to Perry’s return to the platform, issuing a statement on Wednesday, January 11, saying the council member should resign “if the allegations are true.”

He added that the city council could not remove Perry from his post because he had not been convicted of a “crime against morality.” Whether he talks about his position depends on Perry and District 10 voters.

“Highest standard”

Online reactions were mostly critical of Perry’s return, calling for the council member to resign and pointing out privileges and rights.

“I’m in favor of forgiving people, but he’s an elected official, there are higher demands on him.” tweeted by one user named Sarah.

Here’s how others reacted to Perry’s first day.

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