Newly released footage shows how a New Jersey judge was arrested for a DWI in 2016.
Spoiler alert: he appears belligerent and allegedly tried to abuse his power to avoid any consequences.
Wilfredo Benitez, a municipal judge in the New Jersey regions of East Orange, Belleville and Bloomfield, was reportedly passed out in the driver's seat of BMW. The car had been pulled off onto a highway shoulder and its hazard lights were flashing.
The video shows two state troopers attempting to give him a sobriety test. They arrest him on suspicion of drunk driving, telling him he appears intoxicated. Benitez told the troopers that he was “a f----ing judge.” He also yelled at the officers and told one of them that he was "being a d--k.”
"I'll fight you. You know you're being a d--k. I will f--king fight you,” he said.
Later, a breath test found that Benitez's blood-alcohol level was twice the legal limit, according to NJ.com. However, the judge was found not guilty of drunken driving last year. He has apologized for using foul language but admitted nothing else. In fact, he claimed in a legal filing that the reason he announced he was a judge, as stated in the clip, was because the handcuffs were hurting him. The filing argues that Benitez "intended to convey that the handcuffs were unnecessary since he was a judge and he was not going to harm them in any way."
An ethics complaint has been filed against Benitez, accusing him of abusing his position. The complaint comes from the Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct.
Benitez is still serving as a judge but has been barred from hearing DWI cases, according to NJ.com.
[Photo: The Township of Belleville, NJ]