Jalen Rose is accused of DUI in the 48th District Court in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan before Judge Kim Small and will likely face jail time if he enters a guilty plea.

ESPN analyst and former Michigan Fab Five star Jalen Rose was arrested in West Bloomfield, Michigan, for drunk driving on March 11, 2011.  The story did not come to light until March 29, 2011. According to Patch.com, “Rose, 38, originally of Detroit, was arrested around 2 a.m. March 11, West Bloomfield Police Lt. Tim Diamond said Wednesday. Rose was accused of operating a vehicle while impaired after his white Cadillac Escalade slid off Walnut Lake Road west of Middlebelt Road and overturned.”

 

On March 30, 2011,  Rose released the following statement:

On March 11th, I was driving to my home when I was involved in a single vehicle automobile accident.  I voluntarily submitted to a blood alcohol screening and I was confident it was safe for me to drive.

Although I was not feeling impaired, the results of these tests indicated that my blood alcohol level was above the legal limit.  I regret the decision to drive home that evening and am grateful that no one was hurt in the accident.  I apologize to my family, my employer and each and every one of my supporters for my lapse in judgment.  I am particularly sorry for disappointing those who trust me to serve as a role model for young people.

I accept full responsibility for my actions and look forward to a resolution of the legal matter as soon as possible.

The blood alcohol test revealed a .12 blood alcohol content, over Michigan’s .08 legal limit, but the specimen was allowed to go unrefrigerated for several days before undergoing testing.  Worse still, the laboratory that tested the blood sample is being audited this year and has failed to incorporate mandatory quality management systems detailed by ISO/IEC 17025.  There could be substantial challenges raised in this case, especially since Rose reported that he was confident that he was safe to drive.

With his apology and public regrets already released, it seems that Rose is preparing to enter a guilty plea in this case based largely on the blood test result.  This is not unusual in celebrity DUI cases. With a few notable exceptions, media stars typically attempt to quell the excitement surrounding a drunk driving arrest, quietly entering a plea and receiving probationary sentences.  Until Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan made headlines, celebrities were nearly exempt from incarceration on DUI cases.  Even in those rare exceptions, Hilton and Lohan were both granted probation until they violated the terms of the court orders.

Although Rose was involved in an accident, police admit that slippery road conditions were to blame. Since Michigan law provides that it is legal to drink and drive, Rose should be very cautious entering a plea agreement that might land him in jail. On April 20, 2011, he will appear before Judge Kimberly Small of the 48th District Court.  Judge Small boasts a liberal record when it comes to handing down jail sentences on drunk driving cases.  A person accused of driving drunk in her courtroom is presumed innocent and given a fair trial, but a convicted drunk driver faces harsh penalties including jail in almost every case.