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Fmr. state senator arrested on DWI charge

The Conway Police Department arrested former state Sen. Gilbert Baker around 9 p.m. Friday on a DWI charge. (Photo courtesy Faulkner County Sheriff's Office)

The Conway Police Department arrested former state Sen. Gilbert Baker around 9 p.m. Friday on a DWI charge.

Baker also faces charges of driving left of center and refusal of the blood alcohol content (BAC) test.

He was booked into the Faulkner County Detention Center around 4:30 a.m. Saturday and was released on a $1,395 bond shortly before noon the same day, according to online records. A court date was not listed.

Baker is a Republican who represented District 30, which includes Conway, in the Arkansas State Senate from 2001-2013. He currently teaches music at the University of Central Arkansas.

In a 2003 interview with the Log Cabin Democrat, then-Sen. Baker said he was opposed to having more alcohol options in the city.

“I am personally opposed to additional alcohol in Conway, but I do support the opportunity for people to vote on important issues,” he said at the time.

In 2009, Baker supported a bill that raised the alcohol permit fees and provided the Alcohol Beverage Control division (ABC) a $1.2 million increase.

“I think it was a good bill. I did support the bill,” Baker told the Log Cabin Democrat in February 2009. “The primary initiative was that the ABC Board needed more resources for enforcement and regulation. They increased the permits generally to provide those resources, so I supported that. I did support the annual fee for private clubs and supported an additional one-time fee for private clubs in dry counties.”

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