Texas Democrat Accused of Possessing Cocaine Surrenders Himself to Authorities

Rep. Poncho Nevarez Surrenders to Police after Arrest Warrant for Suspected Cocaine Possession

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A Texas member of State Legislature turned himself in Thursday following an arrest warrant that was issued accusing him of dropping an envelope containing small plastic bags of cocaine in September at an Austin airport.

Rep. Poncho Nevarez, D-Eagle Pass, who chairs the Homeland Security and Public Safety Committee in the Texas House, was arrested, fingerprinted, photographed, and released Thursday on a $10,000 bond, police said.

Authorities said Nevarez dropped the envelope after a flight to Austin in September on a plane owned by his law firm. The envelope remained on the ground after he left, and airport workers picked it up and found baggies of white powder inside. The workers alerted the police.

When the powder was tested, it was established to be cocaine. Police sought a DNA sample from Nevarez in October as they were doing an investigation.

“I do not have anyone to blame but myself,” Nevarez said. He said he accepted the accusation and that it would help him get better. He also said he would seek treatment.

Earlier this month, Nevarez said he will not run for another term but did not give reasons.