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Lehmberg to Enter Treatment

Expert says she's able to perform job duties
Jordan Smith, 10:03am, Tue. May. 14, 2013
Photo by Jana Birchum

Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg has accepted a professional recommendation that she seek treatment "for a brief period to deal with the behavior that [led] to my arrest," she said in a statement released Monday night.

In an apparent nod to the pending civil suit that seeks her ouster from office – filed pursuant to a relatively obscure and rarely used provision of the Local Government Code that allows for the removal of certain elected public officials for misconduct, incompetency, or "intoxication on or off duty" – Lehmberg notes that a "foremost" expert from whom she is currently "seeking professional help" has concluded that she is "fully able" to perform her duties as D.A. "I am 'not at risk of injuring the public interest in the performance of [my] duties,' and I have 'normal mental status exam,'" she said.

Until she returns, she said, First Assistant D.A. John Neal will lead the office. "John is extremely competent and I have every confidence in him," she said in the emailed statement. Lehmberg will remain in contact with the office "on a regular basis" during her absence, "just as would any officeholder or department head who received medical treatment or took similar personal leave," she said. "The citizens of Travis County can rest assured the office will function effectively while I am receiving this medical assistance."

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