One San Antonio councilman arrested, another censured on same day

‘I’ve got a lot of reevaluating to do,’ Perry said; ‘I commit to holding myself to a higher standard,’ Bravo said.

(From left) Councilman Clayton Perry and Councilman Mario Bravo. (KSAT)

The San Antonio City Council is facing a slew of shockwaves Thursday after one councilman was taken into custody for his involvement in a hit-and-run crash and another was censured following a recent angry confrontation.

District 10 Councilman Clayton Perry is suspected of being involved in a hit-and-run crash Sunday night. He turned himself in on Thursday and paid a $2,000 bond for failure to stop and provide information, a Class B misdemeanor. The charge is punishable by up to 180 days in jail.

“I’ve got a lot of reevaluating to do,” Perry told the media after posting bond. When asked about the crash, Perry wouldn’t comment and said more information would be released later.

“Trust the process,” he told reporters.

According to an arrest affidavit, four minutes before the crash, a manager at a Bill Miller Bar-B-Q restaurant notified police that a man was slurring his speech and “causing a disturbance” in the drive-thru.

The driver, described as nervous, was driving a black Jeep Wrangler and was identified as Perry after police reviewed surveillance footage.

SAPD said Perry was “easily recognizable” in the surveillance video from the restaurant.

Perry drove away from the restaurant, and the crash happened minutes later. Police were able to match the Wrangler’s license plate in the drive-thru to the one involved in the crash.

The Jeep had been traveling the wrong way on Redland Road when it crashed head-on with a Honda Civic, according to police. The Jeep then reversed and took off at high speed, a witness told SAPD.

That witness followed the Jeep and saw it run past a stop sign with no attempt to slow down or stop, the affidavit states. Eventually, the Jeep came to a stop in a driveway at a residence.

The witness told police the Jeep crashed into a basketball goal and hit the detached garage while parking. Perry’s appearance, described by the witness, matched the driver seen on the surveillance video at Bill Miller Bar-B-Q, according to SAPD.

Police said the witness saw Perry taking items out of the Jeep and dropping them on the driveway before returning to the crash scene. The witness helped lead officers to where the Jeep had come to a stop.

When an officer arrived at the home, he found Perry lying in his backyard with a minor head injury and moaning, the affidavit states.

Perry was “unsteady on his feet” and had slurred speech while speaking with police. He also denied being the driver of the Jeep.

With police unable to prove that Perry was behind the wheel while intoxicated, the case is not being investigated as a DWI.

On Tuesday, Mayor Ron Nirenberg called for Perry’s resignation if the allegations were true.

Perry was absent from the council’s B-session and a Veterans Day function on Wednesday he was expected to attend.

When Perry spoke to the media after posting bond, he said he plans to return to council.

Councilman Mario Bravo censured

Despite a long list of supporters coming to the defense of District 1 Councilman Mario Bravo, the City Council censured him and passed a no-confidence vote Thursday morning.

The resolution passed in a 8-0 vote and is the fallout from an angry confrontation with District 7 Councilwoman Ana Sandoval before the budget vote on Sept. 15.

Bravo will remain on the council until his term ends in seven months, and he can still vote on agenda items despite the resolution’s passing.

He’s not able to be removed by the council, barring certain criminal convictions. And it’s unlikely voters will petition for a recall election due to his short remaining time on council.

Bravo released this statement after the vote:

“On the morning of September 15th, I became emotionally overwhelmed and betrayed my own values. I did not handle myself well that day and I stand by my public apology.

“Since that day I have sought spiritual guidance and focused on deep reflection and personal growth. I am ready to take feedback and make amends, and I commit to holding myself to a higher standard.

“I fully intend to uphold my duty to serve the citizens of District 1 and I look forward to continuing to work with my council colleagues.”

Nirenberg stripped Bravo of his committee assignments on Sept. 23, the same day the city attorney’s office confirmed the city began an independent investigation into the incident.

Bravo was pushing to use $42.5 million in unexpected CPS Energy revenue for climate-related initiatives, but got upset after learning Sandoval was not supportive of his plan.

The pair previously dated and Bravo confronted Sandoval and got personal ahead of the council meeting, leaving her in tears.

Bravo was heard shouting at Sandoval’s top aide that “she put the knives in my back.”

His plan for the CPS Energy revenue died, and the city opted for a mayor-supported city staff plan to use the money for CPS bill credits.

Sandoval was absent from Thursday’s meeting when action was taken against Bravo but her office released this statement on her behalf:

“My hope is that, going forward, City Hall can be a place free of the type of events that occurred on September 15, so that I may continue to represent District 7 to the best of my ability.”

“Thank you to everyone who has contacted me to check on my well-being over the past few weeks. I do not intend to comment further on this matter.”

It’s unknown if Bravo will remain without committee assignments or if the mayor will reassign him to new committees.

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About the Author:

Cody King is a digital journalist for KSAT 12. She previously worked for WICS/WRSP 20 in Springfield, Illinois.