Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Snowboarder Shaun White Arrested

White's mug shot
Media sources are reporting that snowboarder Shaun White was arrested on Sunday morning in Nashville. According to police, a visibly intoxicated White pulled a fire alarm at the Loews Vanderbilt Hotel at around 2 a.m. causing the entire hotel to be evacuated.
The Nashville Police Department's report alleges that:

"White reportedly attempted to flee the hotel in a cab but a citizen prevented the
cab from leaving, telling the driver he was calling police. When White overheard their
conversation, he allegedly kicked the citizen and fled on foot. The citizen reported that
he chased White until White turned and ran into him apparently causing White to fall
backwards and strike his head against a fence. White was transported to a local hospital
for treatment. He was released late this afternoon and is free on his own recognizance.
The citizen declined to prosecute White for assault."

White was charged with vandalism and public intoxication. He was taken into police custody after refusing to sign the misdemeanor citations. Had he simply signed the citations he likely would have been released on his own recognizance that evening. 

The moral of the story is that arguing with the police while drunk is never as good an idea as it seems at the time. Moreover, White was fortunate that the person he kicked did not press charges for assault. Given the nature of the alleged offenses, it is unlikely that they will affect White's ability to perform this winter. Sponsorships and endorsements, of course, are another matter. However, the most likely outcome to White's legal woes will be a negotiated plea bargain where White pays a fine and does community service, but pleads guilty to a lesser offense.

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