Jason Kidd Placed on Interim Probation After Pleading Guilty to DWI
Brooklyn Nets coach Jason Kidd pleaded guilty Tuesday to a misdemeanor drunken driving charge and was placed on an interim probation for his role in a 2012 automobile accident.
Kidd's plea requires him to provide counseling at a Long Island high school, where he will speak on the dangers of drunken driving, per the Associated Press via ESPN. If Kidd completes his community service requirements, the court will reduce his charge to a summary violation of driving while ability impaired at his next scheduled court date on September 30.
Kidd is not expected to see any jail time, provided he completes the required stipulations. The 40-year-old was charged with driving while intoxicated last July after driving his Cadillac Escalade into a telephone pole in Southampton, New York.
Kidd allegedly refused to be breathalyzed after police came onto the scene and declined to have his blood-alcohol concentration measured at a local hospital, where he was treated for minor injuries. The state of New York then charged Kidd with a DWI despite not having his alcohol content, a charge to which he pleaded not guilty at first.
Kidd did, however, apologize via his Twitter account for a "disruption," though he had not yet reached a plea deal with prosecutors:
I regret any disruption my accident last weekend may have caused members of the community and want to thank the local authorities.— Jason Kidd (@RealJasonKidd) July 20, 2012
During his hearing Tuesday, Kidd admitted to having "three or four" drinks on the night in question. Though satisfied with the terms of the prosecution's plea with the new Brooklyn coach, judge Andrea Schiavoni did condemn the danger he posed to himself and others, per the AP report.
"You could have killed yourself. You could have killed someone else," Schiavoni said. "I hope you wake up every day happy to be here."
Kidd retired this past season following a career that included making 10 NBA All-Star teams and winning one championship. He was hired by the Nets as the team's head coach in June. He is the third person in NBA history to ever become a head coach the first year following his retirement, following Mike Dunleavy and Paul Silas.
The Nets are expected to take dramatic step forward following the arrival of Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett from the Boston Celtics. Kidd's development as a coach is a major storyline for the Nets' chances. It's very possible that Kidd won't be able to prove himself as a coach until a few games into the 2013-14 season.
Should Kidd be suspended for this incident?
While the NBA has not released an official statement on the matter, a suspension will likely be coming for Kidd. The league has taken a serious stance against drinking-and-driving violations in the past. As pointed out by Royce Young of CBS Sports, the standard punishment in these cases has been a two-game ban.
Sometimes, as was the case with former Miami Heat forward Dorell Wright, the team has taken it upon itself to make the suspension. In other cases, the league has used its own discretion to levy penalties.
Kidd has not released a statement on his plea deal at this time. His defense attorney, Ed Burke Jr., released a statement via the AP report, saying that his client "took responsibility" for his actions in court Tuesday.
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