A homophobic Maryland lawmaker has admitted to being drunk when he accidentally crashed his boat into a boat full of children.
Maryland delegate Don H. Dwyer Jr was drinking with another man on his boat on the Magothy River in Pasadena around 7pm when his boat struck a smaller vessel with five children on board.
Four of the children were injured with one, a five year old girl, taken by helicopter to Baltimore’s Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.
Two adults on the boat were unharmed.
The smash was so severe that Dwyer’s boat sunk in the river.
Dwyer later admitted to having a blood alcohol level of 0.2 – twice the legal limit.
‘It is true that I was drinking while operating my boat,’ Dwyer told a press conference outside the Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore where he is being treated.
‘No one, no one, should be drinking and operating a motor vehicle or powerboat.’
‘I deeply regret my actions, and I ask for forgiveness from the public. My heart and prayers go out to the family that was involved in the accident, and I pray for them to have a speedy recovery.’
Dwyer, a Tea Party Republican, has in the past suggested that homosexuals were a threat to children and that same-sex marriage would lead to homosexuality being taught in schools.
Dwyer has previously attempted to ban same-sex marriage in Maryland by attaching an amendment to a bill on marriage license fees and sought the sacking or impeachment of public officials who have made decisions that were supportive of same-sex couples having the right to marry.
Earlier this year Dwyer supported a ballot measure to strip lawmakers of their office when found guilty of serious crimes which Maryland voters will decide on in November.
If Dwyer is found to have committed an offense and the ballot initiative is successful he may find himself out of office under the law.