RAT Rock News

Bruce Springsteen appeared before a federal judge today (February 24) and plead guilty to consuming alcohol in a closed area stemming from a November 2020 incident in New Jersey's Gateway National Recreation Area. Initial charges of DWI and reckless driving, however, were dropped.

Per The Asbury Park Press, the hearing took only 27 minutes via video conference. The hearing took place before a federal judge due to Gateway National Recreation Area being a federal park.

While Springsteen pled guilty to the charge of consuming alcohol in a closed area, the DWI and reckless driving charges were dropped because “the government does not believe it can sustain its burden of proof.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Adam Baker said during the hearing, “Specifically the evidence we reviewed after the defendant’s arrest is that he submitted to a breath test at the ranger station and his blood alcohol content was .02, which the court is well aware is well under the legal limit of .08. During the defendant’s field sobriety test he declined to take a preliminary breath test, but that test is not required by law. But he did submit to the legally required breath test when he was at the ranger station.”

Baker further noted, “With a blood alcohol content of a .02 it’s actually low enough for defendant to be considered not impaired under New Jersey law. And the court is aware New Jersey law is not controlling here. And federal law does not recognize such a presumption but we do look to New Jersey law as persuasive guidance and find it useful in reaching our determination. And based on that your honor specifically on the .02 blood content reading, the government respectfully moves the court to dismiss the (DWI and reckless driving) charges.”

Magistrate Judge Anthony R. Mautone ordered Springsteen pay a fine of $540 for pleading guilty to the charge of consuming alcohol in a closed area. Springsteen replied with, “I think I can pay that immediately your honor.”

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Erica Banas is a rock/classic rock news blogger who's well versed in etiquette and extraordinarily nice.