Reese Witherspoon and her husband were arrested last week for DUI-related charges. The actress has since owned up on national television, a move that may hurt her in court.
ATLANTA – ACTRESS Reese Witherspoon and her husband Jim Toth were both arrested in April on charges related to drunk driving. Since then Witherspoon has appeared on national television and spoken frankly about the incident – a choice that DUI defense attorney John Tenn says may be disastrous for her criminal case should she choose to challenge the charges.
Witherspoon was in Georgia shooting the film “The Good Lie.” Toth was driving and was pulled over for driving in the wrong lane; he was arrested for DUI while Witherspoon was arrested for getting into a verbal fight with the arresting officer. She was charged with disorderly conduct.
According to the police report, the officer told her to “sit on her butt and be quiet.”
Thursday on Good Morning America Witherspoon called her behavior “unacceptable” and apologized, saying “We are taking responsibility and doing everything in our power to make it right.”
Several fellow celebrities have applauded Witherspoon’s candor, with Michael Buble praising her “graciousness.” Attorney Tenn says that admission of fault, while “gracious”, may not be good for courtroom defenses.
“Her husband's DUI charge can have very serious consequences. “Pre-trial nationally televised accounts of the events are not typically in a client's best interest.”
Witherspoon did not specifically admit that her husband was too drunk to drive, but her words will be used against her.
“She said they both had too much to drink, and that they both needed to take responsibility.” It’s hard to believe she’s only admitting to speaking disrespectfully to the police officer.
Any criminal conviction can have serious consequences, but in the world of “celebrity”, a little “press”, even bad press, seems to help careers.