Country singer Randy Travis asks federal court to block release of DWI arrest

Randy Travis backstage during 1 Night. 1 Place. 1 Time: A Heroes & Friends Tribute to Randy Travis at Bridgestone Arena on February 8, 2017 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images for Outback Concerts)
Randy Travis backstage during 1 Night. 1 Place. 1 Time: A Heroes & Friends Tribute to Randy Travis at Bridgestone Arena on February 8, 2017 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images for Outback Concerts)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Country music singer Randy Travis is asking a federal court to block the release of “highly intimate” audio and video showing his 2012 arrest for a DWI charge. The lawsuit, filed Sunday in U.S. District Court, claims Travis was “discombobulated” when he left his house without wearing any clothes and drove his car while under the influence of alcohol.

The Texas Department of Public Safety has audio and video of the arrest, which is considered public record under the Texas Public Information Act. Members of the media requested copies of the video, but Travis filed a lawsuit against the Texas Attorney General’s Office asking that portions of the video and audio not be released. The AG, however, ruled that state law requires the release of the video to the public, citing that images of his unclothed body must be redacted from the waist down.

Although Travis previously tried to appeal the decision to release the video, the Third Court of Appeals agreed with Abbott’s ruling and denied the appeal with no written decision. The Texas Supreme Court upheld the ruling and rejected Travis’ attempt to appeal.

Now, in federal court, Travis is claiming that video shows his “compromised medical and mental state,” and is “highly intimate with embarrassing facts.”

The lawsuit states Travis was nude when he left his home on Aug. 7, 2012, after having two glasses of wine earlier that night. He and his significant other went to bed around 10:30 p.m., but she woke up around 1:14 a.m. to notice that Travis was missing. Travis had left their home and stopped at a convenience store wanting to buy cigarettes and was “seemingly unaware of his nudity,” the lawsuit states.

And, at 11:28 p.m., before his significant other noticed he was missing, officers were called to a crash on Farm to Market 922, west of the city of Tioga in Grayson County. Travis was reportedly on his way back home when he crashed his car.

While officers were responding to the scene, the lawsuit claims Travis was disoriented and “extreme religiosity” manifested. The lawsuit says officers noted he was having extreme mood swings and that he went from attempting to bless officers to wanting to harm them.

Travis’ blood alcohol level was 0.21 – more than twice the legal limit.

Travis, whose legal name is Randy Bruce Traywick, pled guilty to the DWI charge and received two years of probation, a 180-day suspended jail sentence and a $2,000 fine.

In 2013, Travis suffered a stroke that nearly took his life. In an interview with The Tennessean, Travis said doctors told his wife to pull the plug after he had the stroke.

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