Soccer star Wayne Rooney pleaded guilty to drunken driving Monday and apologized for what he said was an “unforgivable lack of judgment.”
Rooney, 31, was banned from driving for two years and ordered to perform 100 hours of community work in an appearance at Stockport Magistrates Court in Stockport, England. The Everton striker’s blood alcohol level was almost three times over the legal limit in England and Wales when he was stopped at 2 a.m. on Sept. 1 while driving someone else’s car just outside Manchester. A breathalyzer test showed his level was 104 micrograms in 100 milliliters of breath; the limit is 35 micrograms per 100 milliliters of breath.
Rooney, the all-time leading scorer for England’s national team and for Manchester United, said in a statement on his website:
Following today’s court hearing I want publicly to apologize for my unforgivable lack of judgment in driving while over the legal limit. It was completely wrong.
I have already said sorry to my family, my manager and chairman and everyone at Everton FC. Now I want to apologize to all the fans and everyone else who has followed and supported me throughout my career.
Of course I accept the sentence of the court and hope that I can make some amends through my community service.
Although Rooney had asked that the judge not consider an order of community service because of his charitable works, District Judge John Temperley did not believe that a large fine “would have the same effect.” He also ordered Rooney to pay $115 of prosecution costs and a victim surcharge in the same amount.
Rooney retired from the national team last month, saying, “Now is the time to bow out,” and rejoined Everton after leaving United in July.
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