2-17-06- Oklahoma State basketball coach Eddie Sutton was charged Friday with driving under the influence of alcohol. Payne County prosecutors charged Sutton with a misdemeanor count of aggravated DUI and misdemeanor driving left of center and speeding in connection with an auto accident last Friday afternoon in Stillwater.
An affidavit filed with the charges says Sutton's blood-alcohol level was .22, nearly three times the legal limit of .08. A bottle of prescription pain medicine was found in Sutton's SUV, but there were no traces of the drug in his system. The DUI charge carries up to a year in county jail and a $2500, but District Attorney Rob Hudson says it's routine to offer probation to first-time offenders.
OSU released a statement saying no decision will be made on Sutton's future until after the coach completes a treatment program. Sutton has taken medical leave for the remainder of the season and says he'll check into a treatment center. The coach spent time at the Betty Ford Center in 1987 for treatment of alcoholism while he was head coach at Kentucky.
Sutton said during a news conference this week that he "succumbed" and bought a bottle of alcohol last Friday after prescription drugs failed to alleviate the pain he was in. The coach has suffered from back and hip problems in recent years.