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Pat cites pills in car wreck
By Dave Wedge
Friday, May 5, 2006 - Updated: 01:05 AM EST

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WASHINGTON -U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy insisted yesterday that he had consumed “no alcohol” before he slammed his Mustang convertible into a concrete barrier near his office, but a hostess at a popular Capitol Hill watering hole told the Herald she saw him drinking in the hours before the crash.
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Official comment
    “He was drinking a little bit,” said the woman, who works at the Hawk & Dove and would not give her name.
    Leaving his office late last night, Kennedy refused to say whether he’d been to the Hawk & Dove the night before.
    Earlier in the evening, Kennedy issued a statement through his office blaming the accident and strange behavior surrounding it on prescription drugs.
    He said he returned to his Capitol Hill home on Wednesday evening after House votes and took “prescribed” amounts of Phenergan and Ambien.
    Phenergan is for gastroenteritis, he said. Ambien is a popular sleep medication.
    “Sometime around 2:45 a.m., I drove the few blocks to the Capitol Complex believing I needed to vote,” his second statement said. “Apparently, I was disoriented from the medication.”
    Questions arose surrounding the wreck amid police reports that Kennedy was “staggering” and appeared intoxicated after nearly hitting a Capitol Police cruiser and then striking the barrier.
    The incident became public when the union representing Capitol Police alleged in a publicly released letter that superior officers prevented rank-and-file cops from properly investigating the crash.
    The letter from the cops union said police spotted Kennedy’s Mustang swerving with its lights off. The car narrowly missed a cruiser before slamming into a security barricade, according to the letter written by officer Chris Baird, chairman of the department’s union.
    The driver exited the vehicle and he was observed to be staggering, Baird’s letter states. The letter also said that Kennedy claimed he was“late to a vote.” The last House vote was taken nearly six hours earlier.  [continue]
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U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy. (File)
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