A day after receiving a report from the California Highway Patrol, the Alameda County District Attorney’s office filed charges Wednesday against Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch for driving under the influence of alcohol.
However, Lynch’s attorney, Ivan Golde, believes that his client has a strong case to beat the charges.
Lynch, 26, was arrested by the CHP early Saturday morning when an officer observed him driving erratically on Interstate 880 north of Oakland, weaving in and out of lanes in a white Ford van and nearly colliding with two cars.
After failing a preliminary sobriety test, Lynch was taken into custody and transported to the Alameda County Sheriff department’s north county jail in Oakland. Lynch submitted to a Breathalyzer test, which revealed his blood-alcohol content to be more than the state’s legal limit of 0.08.
Teresa Drenick, director of communications for the district attorney’s office, said Lynch’s arraignment is Aug. 14, although that could change at the request of his attorney.
Golde said Lynch’s blood-alcohol content was measured at 0.08 during a preliminary alcohol screening test. Golde said the officer at the scene administered a breathalyzer test.
Golde said Lynch was retested at the jail about an hour later. He took another breathalyzer test there, and his blood-alcohol content was measured at 0.10. Golde said he will argue the fact that Lynch’s blood-alcohol content level rose after the arrest, showing that it was not above the legal limit while he was driving.
Lynch does not have to be present at his arraignment. Golde said that it’s likely the case will not be resolved until after the 2012 season, unless the district attorney’s office drops the charges.
Golde went on to say that he does not expect Lynch’s season to be affected by the ongoing case. Further, he does not expect Lynch to be suspended for any amount of time unless he’s convicted.
The incident is Lynch’s first DUI offense, and typically NFL commissioner Roger Goodell does not suspend first-time offenders under the league’s substance-abuse program.
“The reason they have to charge him with this is they can’t make the appearance they are giving a celebrity or an athlete preferential treatment,” Golde said.
Lynch already was suspended by the NFL for three games in 2009 under the league’s personal-conduct policy after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor weapons charge.
SKIPPING MINICAMP COSTLY FOR CLEMONS
For disgruntled Seahawks defensive end Chris Clemons, skipping the team’s minicamp in June because of his unhappiness over not getting a contract extension just got more expensive.
Clemons, in the final year of his contract, initially lost $173,000 in fines and workout bonus after skipping the mandatory minicamp.
However, according to a report by NFL.com, because he skipped the mandatory minicamp, Clemons forfeited a $1 million base-salary escalation in his contract.
Clemons’ production in 2010 to 2011 triggered the additional money to his 2012 base salary.
So, instead of earning $4 million in base salary this year, Clemons’ salary has rolled back to its original $3 million, with an additional $800,000 available in an incentive tied to sacks.
Clemons and the team still are in negotiations on a possible extension, which the team hopes to get done before the start of training camp. The players report to camp July email@example.com 253-597-8437 blog.thenewstribune.com/seahawks @eric_d_williams