Generally speaking, the police are not too selective when it comes to stopping motorists on New Jersey parkways and interstates, city streets and rural routes for any number of traffic offenses and vehicle-related infractions. Whether any one of these routine police stops develops into a drunken driving arrest has much to do with the observations that the officer in charge makes during the stop and whether or not the driver has actually consumed an alcoholic beverage recently.
As Garden State residents already know, the focus on anti-drunk driving enforcement has resulted in frequent DWI awareness campaigns tied together with enhanced anti-drunken driving police activities, such as saturation patrols and roadside sobriety checkpoints. Ultimately, most anyone who travels on New Jersey roadways while under the influence of alcohol or drugs may find themselves on the receiving end of a DWI or drug DUI summons with the attendant risk of heavy fines and other penalties.
Most anyone who drives a motor vehicle here, or anywhere across the country, likely understands that with police traffic enforcement comes the potential for drunken driving arrests. Few, if any, people are immune from being stopped by a traffic cop for even the smallest offense or most minor of infractions. Quite often, arrests of everyday men and women can include some from the ranks of the rich and famous.
One of the more recent DWI-DUI incidents involving a celebrity took place on the West Coast when police arrested TV teen actor David Cassidy, known to many as Keith Partridge, the on-screen son of Shirley Jones in the 1970’s hit show, “The Partridge Family.” According to news reports, Mr. Cassidy’s latest arrest marked the third time the pop icon has been charged with a drunken driving offense.
The arrest began with the actor making an illegal “right on red” turn in the Los Angeles area on January 10. Following the traffic stop, police apparently detected some kind of evidence of intoxication and arrested Cassidy for driving under the influence. Cassidy’s latest encounter with the police in California adds to the two previous run-ins for DWI-related traffic offenses elsewhere in the country.
According to news articles, the teen heartthrob was taken into custody last summer while in Schodack, NY, after being flagged down at a roadside police traffic checkpoint. At the time, police claimed that the star failed to dim his vehicle’s high beams while being directed into the roadblock area. He was subsequently arrested and charged with drunken driving.
Cassidy joins a long line of celebrities who have been arrested by law enforcement officers for a variety of traffic offenses over the years. From actresses Lindsay Lohan and Reese Witherspoon, to singers MC Hammer and Fiona Apple, these individuals have all allegedly run afoul of the law. For most famous celebrities, hiring a skilled DWI defense attorney is rarely based on financial concerns, but more due to their fame and notoriety; for the average person, the cost of being convicted for a drug DUI or drunken driving offense can be substantial.
In Mr. Cassidy’s case, the 63-yer-old had a reportedly 0.19 percent blood-alcohol content (BAC) following a breathalyzer test. That’s twice the legal limit, even in California. Based on news articles, the actor was driving a rented Chevy Impala near the Los Angeles International Airport at the time of the arrest. He was reportedly charged with DUI, but was later released on $15,000 bail pending a court hearing.
Cassidy currently lives in the Fort Lauderdale, FL, area where he received a previous first-time DWI conviction in early 2011, according to news reports. Following a no-contest plea that year, Cassidy was fined $500 and sentenced to one-year probation following a six-month license suspension. He also was ordered to attend a DUI school and 50 hours of community service.
David Cassidy arrested again on drunken driving charge, CNN.com, January 12, 2014
Partridge Family star David Cassidy arrested for DUI for the third time, DailyMail.co.uk, January 11, 2014