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Tiger Woods arrested on DUI charges in Florida

DOUG FERGUSON, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | posted Tuesday, May 30th, 2017

BT
This image provided by the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office on Monday, May 29, 2017, shows Tiger Woods. Police in Florida say Tiger Woods has been arrested for DUI. The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office says on its website that the golf great was arrested Monday and booked at about 7 a.m. (Palm Beach County Sheriuff’s office via AP)
Tiger Woods was arrested early Monday on a DUI charge in Jupiter, Florida, and spent nearly four hours in a county jail before he was released.

In a statement he said alcohol was not involved but rather it was an unexpected reaction to a mix of prescription medications.

He went on to thank the Jupiter Police department and The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s office for how they handled the situation.

Woods, the 14-time major champion who ranks second with his 79 career victories on the PGA Tour, has not played for four months. He is out for the rest of the season while he recovers from his fourth back surgery.

Woods was arrested on suspicion of DUI about 3 a.m. Monday in a suburban area and taken to the Palm Beach County jail, Jupiter Police spokeswoman Kristin Rightler said. He was arrested on Military Trail, south of Indian Creek Parkway.

Jail records show that Woods was booked into Palm Beach County jail at 7:18 a.m. and released on his own recognizance at 10:50 a.m.

Rightler said she did not have additional details about the circumstances leading to Woods’ arrest, nor did she have any information about whether the arrest involved drugs or alcohol. She said an arrest report may be available Tuesday.

His agent at Excel Sports, Mark Steinberg, did not immediately respond to a voicemail from The Associated Press. PGA Tour spokesman Ty Votaw said the tour would have no comment.

Notah Begay, a roommate of Woods when they played at Stanford, could relate. Begay was arrested for aggravated drunken driving in 2000 when he ran into a car outside a bar in New Mexico. He was sentenced to 364 days in jail, with all but seven days suspended.

“It’s embarrassing for Tiger, something that you can’t go back and change,” Begay said on Golf Channel from the NCAA men’s golf championship, where he was working for the network. “I’ve been there myself. … But it was a turning point in my life. Hopefully, it’s something he’ll learn from, grow from, take responsibility for and use it to make some changes.”

Woods has not been seen at a golf tournament since he opened with a 77 at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic, withdrawing the next day because of back spasms. He was in Los Angeles for the Genesis Open, run by his Tiger Woods Foundation, but did not come to the course because of his back.

He was at the Masters, but only to attend the dinner for past champions.

Woods, who had been No. 1 longer than any other golfer, has not been a factor since his last victory in August 2013 as he battled through back surgeries from a week before the 2014 Masters until his most recent operation to fuse disks in his lower back a month ago.

In an update Friday on his website, Woods said the fusion surgery provided instant relief and that “I haven’t felt this good in years.”

It was the first time Woods has run into trouble off the golf course since he plowed his SUV into a tree and a fire hydrant outside his Windermere, Florida, home in the early morning after Thanksgiving in 2009, which led to revelations that he had multiple extramarital affairs.

A police report then showed that a Florida trooper who suspected Woods was driving under the influence sought a subpoena for the golfer’s blood test results from the hospital, but prosecutors rejected the petition for insufficient information.

A witness, who wasn’t identified in the report, told the trooper he had been drinking alcohol earlier. The same witness also said Woods had been prescribed two drugs, the sleep aid Ambien and the painkiller Vicodin. The report did not say who the witness was but added it was the same person who pulled Woods from the vehicle after the accident. Woods’ wife has told police that she used a golf club to smash the back windows of the Cadillac Escalade to help her husband out.

He eventually was cited for careless driving and fined $164.

Woods and wife Elin Nordegren divorced in August 2010. He later had a relationship with Olympic ski champion Lindsey Vonn from 2013 that lasted two years.

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