A prominent attorney from Northern Virginia was charged with public intoxication on the College of William and Mary campus late last month while in town for Board of Visitors meetings, according to police.
Laura L. Flippin, who was appointed to the board by Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) last year, was cited for public intoxication at 12:45 a.m.on Sept. 23, according to a police report. Police said a preliminary breath test found Flippin’s blood alcohol level was .253. (The legal limit for driving after drinking is .08 in Virginia and most states. )
Williamsburg Police Chief David Sloggie said his department received a phone call early that morning about an intoxicated woman who had fallen near the Green Leafe Cafe, a popular bar near campus. He said officers found the “extremely intoxicated” woman on campus, “wobbling noticeably” and bleeding from a cut on the bridge of her nose.
Flippin was treated by medics, cited for public intoxication, and then taken to jail for several hours. “Usually you don’t leave there until you’re sober,” Sloggie said.
Flippin did not return phone and e-mail messages left Monday morning.
On the day she was cited, Flippin missed the last day of fall board meetings, according to a university spokesman. The board oversees operation of the university and is most known by students for setting tuition rates. The incident was first reported by The Virginia Gazette.
Jeffrey B. Trammell, chair of the Board of Visitors, said in a statement that it would be “inappropriate at this time” to comment on the legal matter. Trammell said Flippin “is a devoted alumna of the College and a tireless member of the Board.”
Flippin is a partner in DLA Piper’s Litigation practice in D.C., where she focuses on “government investigations, corporate internal investigations and compliance, securities fraud and sophisticated civil litigation matters,” according to her biography.
She graduated from William and Mary in 1992 and earned a law degree from the University of Virginia in 1996. Flippin was previously a partner at Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker, and served as a special assistant to President George W. Bush at the White House, where she handled homeland security matters. She lives in Arlington.
The Gazette reported on Saturday that it learned about the citation through a reader, because the incident was not included in daily reports to local media from the police.
Sloggie said the omission was a mistake. The officer who took the report had a busy night and forgot to enter it into the log that is shared with the media. There was no attempt to hide the report, he said, because “I’m not even sure if anyone knew who this lady was.”
The Gazette reported that Flippin is scheduled to appear in court on Oct. 17, and is represented by Tommy Norment, a state senator who used to represent the university. Norment did not return a phone message left at his office Monday morning.
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