Carmel, IN- Indianapolis Colts owner James Irsay was arrested late Sunday night for driving under the influence and possession after several bottles of prescription drugs were found in his vehicle.
Carmel police officer Lt. Joe Bickel stopped Irsay because he was driving slowly, stopped in the roadway, and then made a turn without using his turn signal, according to the police report.
Irsay was then asked to perform several field sobriety tests, all of which he failed.
Lt. Bickel searched his car and found prescription drug bottles with a variety of different drugs in them. Lt. Bickel wrote in his report, “These Schedule IV prescription drugs were not associated with any prescription bottles found in the vehicle.”
Schedule IV prescription drugs include drugs like Valium, Xanax, Soma, Darvon, Darvocet, Valium and Ativan.
Police have not said which drugs exactly were found in Irsay’s vehicle, but they have charged him with four counts of felony possession of a controlled substance and one misdemeanor charge of driving under the influence. But these are just the preliminary charges and could change in the future.
He was held until Monday afternoon and was released after posting $22,500 bond, USA Today reported.
Over a decade ago, in 2002, Irsay admitted to being addicted to prescription painkillers. He said he developed his addiction after undergoing orthopedic surgeries and suffering from “bouts of chronic pain.” At the time, Irsay sought help for his addiction and went into rehab, but his arrest makes it clear he was not able to completely kick the habit.
NFL Commissioner Robert Goddell has the power to suspend any owner, player or team employee who violates the leagues Code of Conduct, but whether that will happen remains to be seen. The league is rather lenient when players are arrested for driving under the influence or drug possession, but league spokesman Greg Aiello said if Irsay is found guilty the league would discipline him.
“We are gathering information at this time regarding last night’s incident involving Jim Irsay,” an announcement from the Colts said, “The team will issue additional statements when the facts are sorted and we are aware of the next steps to this process. Many fans have reached out to express their concern and we appreciate their support.”
Irsay’s friend Bob Kravitz wrote an op-ed in USA Today detailing the long-standing problems Irsay has had with drugs.
Isray became owner of the team after his father Robert Isray died in 1997. He and his wife of over 30 years just divorced last November.
If Irsay is struggling with drugs, he could try to reduce the penalties he faces for the possession and DWI charges by agreeing to rehab. Because he is such a wealthy man, Irsay can easily afford the best DUI attorney and might be able to negotiate a plea bargain that helps him avoid jail.
You don’t have to be wealthy to afford a DUI attorney and anyone facing these charges is encouraged to hire one.