OAKLAND (CBS SF) — Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch was charged Wednesday with misdemeanor driving under the influence after being pulled over in the East Bay early Saturday morning, according to his attorney, Ivan Golde.
However, Golde said he thinks Lynch, 26, has a good chance of avoiding a conviction because he believes Lynch’s blood-alcohol content was below the legal limit of .08 percent when he was pulled over.
A California Highway Patrol officer stopped Lynch around 3:20 a.m. after he saw the white 2012 Ford E-350 van Lynch was driving weaving in and out of its lane on northbound Interstate 880 in Oakland and nearly running into two other northbound cars.
The officer pulled Lynch over near 67th and Shellmound streets in Emeryville.
The CHP said Lynch showed signs of intoxication and performed poorly in field sobriety tests, and that a breath test a short time later showed that he had a blood-alcohol content over the legal limit of .08 percent.
But Golde said the breath test was conducted 15 minutes after Lynch was stopped and that he thinks Lynch’s blood-alcohol level was below the .08 threshold when he was driving.
He said the breath test showed that Lynch’s level was right at .08 percent and a second test conducted 40 minutes later showed that it was at .10 percent, which he said indicates that Lynch had a rising blood-alcohol level, not a falling level.
“It’s proof that the level was going up,” Golde said.
He said he thinks the case against Lynch is borderline and that the only reason prosecutors are filing charges is that Lynch is a well-known football player.
Lynch graduated from the University of California at Berkeley, where he was the second all-time career rusher, running for 3,230 yards in his time as a Golden Bear. He signed a four-year, $31 million contract with the Seahawks last March.
Alameda County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Teresa Drenick declined to comment on the case today, other than to say, “we review all cases equally and make all charging decisions based upon the facts.”
Lynch is scheduled to be arraigned in Alameda County Superior Court on Aug. 14.
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