On June 12, first term Washington County Justice of the Peace for District 10 , Andrea Jenkins of Farmington, was arrested after driving to bring an insurance card to her son after he was in an accident. She was charged with driving while intoxicated with a reported blood alcohol level of .17, which is two times the legal limit in Arkansas. Jenkins is a Teacher and Bus Driver for Farmington Schools in addition to serving as Justice of the Peace.
The WCRC has waited for statements from JP Jenkins and the Washington County Democrats prior to releasing a statement on this event, however both have been silent regarding the arrest. In addition, the personal and public Facebook pages for Justice Jenkins have either been taken down or hidden and can no longer be found. Furthermore, previous comments by Ms. Jenkins on other accounts have also disappeared from Facebook. Having found no formal apology from Ms. Jenkins for her poor decision making and mistreatment of the officer, we now must clearly provide our own statement.
The WCRC recognizes that getting a phone call after you child is in an accident can be traumatic and cause a parent to react irrationally. However, as details have unfolded it has become apparent that not only did Ms. Jenkins have the ability to otherwise obtain transportation to bring the insurance card to the accident site but upon being questioned by the responding officer Ms. Jenkins also tried to use the position of her office and influence to obtain special treatment and continued to verbally abuse and threaten the responding officer.
We all make mistakes and need forgiveness at some point in our lives. But the lack of remorse and continued defense of these actions as something any parent would do cannot be tolerated. Driving while intoxicated, even if it is a snap judgment in response to an emergency, is never acceptable. Attempting to use your office and the people you know to gain favorable treatment and avoid the consequences of that decision is never acceptable. Treating our law enforcement officers who risk their lives every day abusively and threatening them is never acceptable. Yes, we all make mistakes - but when we make them we need to be responsible adults and admit to them, ask for forgiveness and apologize to those we hurt or mistreated.
For more details on this matter, we refer you to the published news stories that can be found online.