PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Former Republican congressional candidate Michael Riley tried to intimidate officers who pulled him over Wednesday in Narragansett and had to be pepper sprayed after becoming agitated, authorities said, and he faces charges of driving under the influence and resisting arrest.
Riley’s vehicle was pulled over at 1:45 a.m. Wednesday after an officer observed it leave the road, according to police, who said the 56-year-old investment adviser slurred his words and refused to provide his license and registration when asked. He also refused to take a field sobriety test.
An officer said Riley became irritated and questioned why he had been pulled over. He told officers that he had run for Congress and that they would lose their jobs. After the officers told Riley that he was under arrest, he attempted to leave, saying he would walk home. When the officers prevented him from leaving, he yelled ‘‘I ran for goddamn Congress’’ and then swore, according to the report.
Police said Riley was sprayed with pepper spray after he struggled and yelled as officers placed him in handcuffs. Once restrained, police said Riley sat on the ground, cried, and asked police to let him walk home. Police said Riley appeared to be confused throughout, asking police how many times they had pulled him over that night, what town they were in and what the date was.
He was arraigned early Wednesday by a justice of the peace and released to his wife.
A message left for Riley at his home in Narragansett on Thursday was not immediately returned.
Riley ran an unsuccessful campaign to oust U.S. Rep. Jim Langevin last year, loaning his own campaign more than $600,000. Langevin, a Democrat, beat Riley 56 to 35 percent.
The arrest was first reported by the website RI Future.