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Originally published: 2014-04-03 18:32:49
Last modified: 2014-04-03 18:34:03

Record search uncovers DWI in DA race

by Anna Oakes

A statewide search of criminal records conducted by the Watauga Democrat this week revealed that not all of the candidates for 24th prosecutorial district attorney have a clean record.

Nathan A. Miller of Boone confirmed that he was convicted of driving while impaired in Orange County in 2003.

Miller said he got the DWI while in college at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
"I made a mistake when I was 21," Miller said.

"I accepted responsibility for it, and I was forgiven by my Lord and was forgiven by my family," he said.

Miller said he was duly punished for the offense and moved on years ago.

"It has in no way hindered my ability to get into law school, to pass the North Carolina State Bar and be admitted as a lawyer, (and) it didn't impede my ability to serve with distinction as the chairman of the Watauga County Board of Commissioners," he said.

"I've learned from my mistake. It allows me to see things from all sides. I have been before (the court) personally, not just as a defense attorney."

Miller said he has nothing to hide and that he "figured it would come up at some point."

District attorney candidate Seth Banks of Burnsville received a speeding ticket in 2007, but did not appear to have any other criminal records.

A statewide search for candidate Britt Springer of Boone did not appear to yield any records of criminal charges or convictions.

The race for district attorney is one of the contests heating up early in 2014, with three Republicans vying for the seat in the May 6 primary.

The primary will decide the winner of the office, however, because no candidates from other parties filed to run.

The primary responsibility of the district attorney is to prosecute all criminal cases in the Superior and District courts in North Carolina.