U.S. Rep. Timothy J. Ryan was arrested on a charge of public intoxication in August in Lexington, Va. The misdemeanor charge was dismissed Tuesday in a Virginia court.
"Congressman Ryan made it clear at the time of the citation and ever since that he was not intoxicated," his spokesman Pat Lowry said. "We're pleased that the court agreed. Congressman Ryan was found not guilty and the case was dismissed."
Ryan, 39, D-Niles, had been in Virginia for a staff wedding and was arrested on Aug. 25 while walking to his hotel, according to Lowry and the Washington Post. He refused a Breathalyzer test and was released on his own recognizance. He later pleaded not guilty.
Ryan told a reporter at the Cleveland Plain Dealer that he was walking awkwardly down the street because his back was sore from an old football injury. Lowry said that Ryan has had recurring back issues.
Ryan played quarterback for John F. Kennedy High School in Warren. His knee injury ended his chance to play for the Jim Tressell-coached Youngstown State University Penguins, according to reports. He graduated from Bowling Green State University in 1995 with a degree in political science.
Ryan did not return calls to his Washington office for comment Tuesday night.
Disorderly conduct charges from Ryan's days as a student at Bowling Green University were at the center of several political advertisements in 2000, when he won a seat as an state senator. Ryan said then of his 1993 disorderly conduct conviction for having a fake identification, ''I was 19. I was doing something stupid.''
Ryan then pointed to his experience as an aide for U.S. Rep. James A. Traficant Jr., D-Poland, for two years, and studies at Franklin Pierce Law School as more important to his campaign. Voters apparently agreed, and Ryan took nearly 51 percent of the vote in a three-way race.
In 2002, Ryan replaced Traficant in Congress. Traficant was convicted of bribery, racketeering and tax evasion.
Ryan is serving his fifth term in the House of Representatives, and reportedly is considering running for Ohio governor.
The congressman was not at the court hearing Tuesday because the House was in session, according to Lowry.