The first decade of the new millennium came in with a bang – everyone was freaked out about Y2K, and ringing in the year 2000 might have been the biggest party Times Square has ever seen.
Along with all the fun to be had in the 2000s, there were plenty of celebrities busted for drunk driving.
Among the celebrity DUIs from 2000 – 2009 are actor Rip Torn, busted in Connecticut in December 2006; former basketball star Charles Barkley, arrested in Arizona in December 2008; Stephanie Pratt, “The Hills” reality star, arrested in October 2009; Mike Tyson, former boxer, busted in Arizona in December 2006; George Michael caught in England in August 2009; and actress Heather Locklear, arrested in California in September 2008 – just to name a few.
There were also some close calls that didn’t turn into an arrest and DUI charges, like Jenna Bush’s warning for underage drinking and driving back in 2001.
To help recap the first decade of the new millennium, Total DUI has compiled a list of the Top Ten Most Memorable Celebrity DUIs of the Decade:
- Academy Award nominee Nick Nolte was arrested in September 2002 when highway patrol pulled him over for erratic driving in Malibu. Nolte was described by officers as “drooling” and “completely out of it.” Nolte had a history of drug and alcohol abuse, once referring to himself as a “functioning drunk,” according to CBS News.
- Actor and comedian Tracy Morgan, formerly of Saturday Night Live, had a blood–alcohol level of .13 when he was arrested in Hollywood in December 2005. Morgan was given three years of probation as a result of the DUI offense, and had to attend an alcohol education program, according to an Associated Press report.
- Canadian rock group Nickleback’s front man, Chad Kroeger, was arrested for DUI in British Columbia in June 2006, according to the Canadian Press. Kroeger was pulled over for “excessive speeding and erratic driving,” while in his $175,000 Lamborghini. After the arrest, Kroeger’s main concern was how his car was to be transported home. The officers allowed him to make arrangements and stay with the car until he was sure it would make it safely back to his house.
- In July 2006, actor Mel Gibson was arrested for DUI in California. He also reportedly had an open container in his car, according to CNN. Gibson’s DUI arrest was made memorable after he was reported to have made anti-Semitic and sexist comments, for which he later apologized. Gibson’s DUI has since been expunged.
- Child star Haley Joel Osment, famous for his roles in The Sixth Sense and A.I., was charged with DUI in July 2006. According to People Magazine, Osment crashed his car into a mailbox and flipped over. He was charged with the possession of marijuana and for being under the age of 21 with a .05 blood-alcohol level. Osment was 18 years old at the time.
- Paris Hilton: Singer, actress, comedian, heiress, arrestee? According to MSNBC, Hilton was on her way to In-N-Out Burger after having not eaten all day when she was pulled over and arrested for DUI in September 2006. The heiress said of her DUI arrest, “It was nothing,” and her publicist said he doubted it would hurt her reputation – if anything, it seems like it made her more famous.
- Nicole Richie, star of TV’s “The Simple Life,” was arrested for DUI in California in December 2006. According to an ABC News report, Richie was driving alone in her Mercedes SUV. Officers picked her up after receiving 911 calls about a car driving on the wrong side of the expressway. At the time of her arrest, Richie was said to be 5’1″ and weighed just 85 pounds.
- In July 2007 in Santa Monica, Lindsay Lohan was booked in jail as part of a California DUI investigation after a 911 call from a woman who was allegedly being chased by Lohan’s SUV. This arrest occurred only two weeks after the actress left rehab, according to a Fox News report. Lohan was unable to pass a field sobriety test at the time of her arrest.
- Comedian and former Saturday Night Live cast member, Bill Murray, was traveling abroad in Sweden when was seen driving around in a golf cart in August 2007. Murray was never convicted, according to CBS News, but he refused a breathalyzer when Swedish authorities pulled him over, so they required a blood test. Officials said prison was unlikely, but the actor faced a fine. No one knows where the golf cart came from, but officials asserted that there were no theft charges against the actor.
- The star of the hit TV series “24″, Kiefer Sutherland, was arrested in Hollywood in September 2007 on suspicion of DUI. After making an illegal U-turn, the actor was pulled over by LAPD officials and failed a field sobriety test, according to People Magazine. This was Sutherland’s second DUI arrest of the decade (the first was in 2004), so he served mandatory jail time.