Rep. Trey Radel (R-Fla.) announced in a Wednesday press conference that he will take a leave of absence and donate his salary to charity after being busted for cocaine possession. After pleading guilty, Radel was sentenced to one-year probation.
This photo taken July 9, 2013 shows Rep. Henry "Trey" Radel, R-Fla. on Capitol Hill in Washington. Radel pleaded guilty Wednesday to misdemeanor cocaine possession. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Radel made no excuses for his actions, saying he let down the country, his constituents. and his family. He also revealed that he has struggled with alcoholism in the years after his mother's "terrible and tragic" death.
"I hope, like family, southwest Florida can forgive me for this. I've let them down, but I do believe in faith, forgiveness and redemption and i hope to come out of this a stronger man, a better man, for all of you," he said.
The freshman GOP congressman has sought help for his addiction and will continue getting help while his staff continues to work in his absence.
"Sometimes in life you need a wake up call. This is my wake up call," Radel said.
A Drug Enforcement Administration official said Radel bought cocaine in a Washington, D.C., neighborhood on Oct. 29. Later that night, federal authorities went to his apartment and informed him that he would be facing criminal charges. The charges were made public Tuesday.