Sandy Hook, NJ – Prosecutors dropped the DUI and reckless driving charges against rock legend Bruce Springsteen on Wednesday.
In exchange for the dismissals, Springsteen pleaded guilty to one count of consuming alcohol in a closed area, ABC News reported.
U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Anthony Mautone levied a $500 fine and $40 in court fees against the Grammy Award winner, and granted the prosecution’s request to dismiss the remaining two charges.
Springsteen refused to submit to a preliminary breath test at the scene, as is his right, Assistant U.S. Attorney Adam Baker said, according to ABC News.
He later submitted to testing at the ranger station, where he was found to have a BAC of .02, according to Baker.
“The prosecutor was unable to provide the necessary evidence and facts as it related to the charge of Driving under the Influence (DUI) and Reckless Driving and therefore, dismissed both of those charges,” Springsteen’s attorney, Mitchell Ansell, said in a statement after the hearing.
Ansell said his client “is pleased with the outcome” of the case, ABC News reported.
Springsteen was arrested on a drunk driving charge while visiting a recreation area in his home state late last year, but the information just became public Feb. 10.
The 71-year-old rock legend’s arrest was first reported by TMZ.
“On November 14, 2020, Bruce Springsteen was arrested in Gateway National Recreation Area and received three citations; DWI, reckless driving, and consuming alcohol in a closed area,” a National Park Service public affairs officer confirmed in a statement to FOX News later that day.
Springsteen was “cooperative throughout the process,” the statement noted.
According to court documents, a Gateway National Recreation Area park ranger saw Springsteen take a shot of Patron tequila shortly before jumping on his motorcycle and started it up, ABC News reported.
Alcohol is banned within the limits of the federal park.
The ranger made contact with Springsteen, who confirmed he was getting ready to head out, ABC News reported.
“Springsteen smelt strongly of alcohol coming off his person and had glassy eyes,” the ranger wrote, according to court documents.
Although Springsteen claimed to have only consumed two shots of tequila within the 20-minute span of time leading up to their encounter, the ranger noted that the Patron bottle was empty, ABC News reported.
The dismissal came just days after Springsteen and former President Barack Obama announced they will be teaming up for a new podcast series.
— Consequence of Sound (@consequence) February 22, 2021
Springsteen’s fans have often praised him for the healthy lifestyle he has promoted over the years, NBC News reported.
He noted in his 2016 autobiography, “Born to Run,” that consuming alcohol had negatively impacted his father and played into his decision not to try alcohol at all until he was 22 years old.
Springsteen said he has avoided drugs altogether.
“He’s in good shape by not doing drugs,” E Street Band guitarist Steven Van Zandt said during a Rolling Stone interview in 2012, according to NBC News. “It’s something he doesn’t have to preach about. He’s a living example of what happens when you never do drugs your whole life.”
“I mean, I’m sure he’s taken a drink or two a few times in his life, but he was never a drinker either,” Van Zandt said at the time. “And he eats right and he’s in the gym. Well, that’s what happens…Don’t do drugs. Don’t drink, eat right, go to the gym and you can rock & roll at 62, too.”
Jeep ran a Super Bowl ad featuring the aging rock star, but they deleted the ad from their YouTube channel after news of the arrest broke, according to the New York Post.