Looks like young Robert Casey drove his political career straight into a brick wall.
Or did he?
Maybe in the long run few Scranton voters will care that the All-American boy with the Irish-American grin, the high vote getter in the November school board election, the grocery clerk at the local supermarket who still lives at home with mom and dad while he works on his college degree, spun out of control in the early morning hours of a recent weekend gone wild.
But I care.
That’s why young Casey – no relation to the famous Scranton senator of the same name – must soon decide that he’s not up to the job of public service – at least not yet.
Dad drove him to rehab Monday for treatment of an alcohol problem. Meanwhile they await police action on the East Stroudsburg accident that sent young Robert crawling from the car and walking to the hospital for 14 stitches in his hand and a blood alcohol test.
Dad says his son told him he had been drinking and was off on a little ride in a car that belonged to a young woman he had recently met. Robert was alone, Dad said, and rolled the car. Maybe his driving skills would have been better if, even at 23, he had a driver’s license.
But young Robert has no license.
Dad says he called the young woman’s father and offered to pay for everything, including a rental car and another vehicle of similar value. In return, Dad says the owner suggested that he might not push police to charge young Robert with stealing the car.
Driving without a license.
Not to mention the two other alcohol-related charges that your rookie public servant has in his past. Notice that I say in his past and not on his record because no record exists, according to Dad. Young Robert pleaded guilty a few years ago to public drunkenness and received community service as punishment. The record was eventually expunged,. Dad says.The underage drinking charge disappeared when police failed to show at the hearing for Robert and four of his buddies, one of whom had fallen off a rock in a display of drunken ballet near the baseball stadium.
Technically young Robert has no criminal record for alcohol.
But young Robert has a history.
And that history can erupt in an explosive stupor that at any moment could kill him and anybody around him.
But he’s such a gentleman, one caller to “Corbett” said Monday when we broke the story on the air.
He’s so polite.
He’s a good boy.
Yeah, he is that and more.
He's also a drunk.
I voted for young Robert and publicly endorsed him.
But I sensed something wrong when he never called the show during either the primary or the general election. Dad says he advised him not to call in the primary because young Robert wasn’t polished or sophisticated and he worried about his boy. Young Robert personally gave me his word in the supermarket one day that he’d call during the general.
But his word was no good.
I now wonder if they worried that I might have heard the drunken stories the way I heard the most recent tale. I wonder if they were both playing Scranton politics – Dad is a former Scranton school board member himself and an admitted recovering alcoholic. He said he was so drunk once that Wilkes-Barre police stopped him and eventually called him a cab. Dad says he told the cabbie to pull over because he was going to be sick. He then ran back to his car and took off.
Police only then charged him with DUI.
But, according to Dad, he made a few calls and the charge went away.
That’s the way things got done back then.
But, as Dad says, it’s a new day.
Let’s hope so. Let’s hope young Robert recovers and works to stay sober. Some people just can’t drink without running amok.