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Ex-Falcons player falls asleep while driving, charged with DUI

| Jul 3, 2012 | License Suspension |

Earlier last week, the full police report for Jamal Anderson’s DUI arrest, a former running back for the Atlanta Falcons, had not yet been available. It had only been reported that the 39-year-old was arrested and charged with DUI in Georgia after driving too slowly and impeding traffic on June 24.

After obtaining a copy of the full police report earlier this week, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that the former NFL player had fallen asleep behind the wheel before police arrested him for drunk driving. An attorney for Anderson has claimed the former NFL player was not drunk at the time of the arrest. Anderson claims that he was exhausted after traveling and spending time with family over the weekend.

According to the police report, Anderson had been driving a 2008 Cadillac Escalade in DeKalb County when he allegedly fell asleep behind the wheel. The former NFL player’s car was stopped at an intersection while still in drive. When police noticed that the vehicle failed to move after a traffic light turned green for the vehicle, police attempted to conduct a traffic stop.

An officer approached the vehicle and discovered that the driver was sleeping. In an effort to wake the driver, the officer tapped on Anderson’s window several times, the incident report states. Eventually, an officer had to climb through the vehicle’s sunroof in order to turn the vehicle off and to unlock the vehicle’s doors. After placing the driver in handcuffs, police reported that Anderson finally woke up.

The police report states that officers suspected that Anderson had been intoxicated because they could detect the odor of alcohol. Officers also noted that the driver’s eyes were bloodshot after he woke up. When the former Falcons running back was first questioned about whether or not he had been drinking prior to driving, Anderson informed the officers that he had been experiencing some personal problems with his family and that he had not been drinking.

Anderson agreed to take a field sobriety test, but he was arrested after police said that he refused to take a breath test. Because Anderson refused to submit a breath test, prosecutors will only be able to rely on information from the police report and the results of the field sobriety test if charges are filed in court against the former NFL player.

However, because Anderson did refuse the breath test, he could face a 12-month driver’s license suspension without the option of a restricted driver’s license if he is convicted of DUI.

Source: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “Police: Tried repeatedly to awake Jamal Anderson before DUI arrest,” July 2, 2012