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Mar 17, 2014 7:02 PM by AP

NFL's Indianapolis Colts owner Irsay fails sobriety tests, is arrested

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Colts owner Jim Irsay is known in NFL circles as a tough businessman and eccentric billionaire who enjoys interacting with fans about his beloved team and favorite songs from bands like the Beatles and the Grateful Dead.

He may end up adding convicted felon to the mix.

Irsay was pulled over near his home in suburban Carmel just before midnight Sunday by police who said they found multiple prescription drugs inside his vehicle. He was spotted driving slowly, stopping in the roadway and failing to use a turn signal, and police said Irsay failed several roadside field sobriety tests before he was arrested.

The drugs weren't associated with any of the pill bottles found inside, police said. Some weren't even in bottles.

The 54-year-old Irsay, who acknowledged a painkiller dependency more than a decade ago, faces preliminary charges of misdemeanor driving while intoxicated and four felony counts of possession of a controlled substance.

If Irsay is charged and convicted on the felony counts, he could face six months to three years in prison on each count. Chief Deputy Prosecutor Andre Miksha said no decision had been made on formal charges and a hearing was set for March 26.
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Colts owner Jim Irsay has double image in media
This mug shot provided by the Hamilton County Sheriff's Department shows Indianapolis Colts owne ...

Irsay, whose mug shot was posted on websites for millions to see, said nothing as he left the Hamilton County Jail after posting bond Monday. A short time later, he tweeted: ''Deepest thx to family, friends, fans, colleagues for the messages of support, thoughts and prayers. Impossible to tell u how much this means.''

An NFL spokesman said Irsay is subject to discipline but didn't elaborate on what that might be. Detroit Lions president Tom Lewand was suspended for 30 days and fined $100,000 in 2010 for violating the NFL's personal conduct policy following his guilty plea to driving while impaired.

Current and former NFL players were clearly watching the case with interest.

''I want to see what the NFL does about this Jim Irsay situation if a player loses a game check no matter the amount he should lose a game day,'' Atlanta Falcons wide receiver White tweeted. ''I'm guessing a million dollar fine will come which is nothing to a man that makes billions.''

Photo courtesy: Hamilton County Sheriff's Department

 

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