Charleston, West Virginia – A Charleston police officer pulled over racer Bobby Dale Earnhardt on a Monday evening after observing Earnhardt make a wide left turn while driving at a high rate of speed, which caused the tires to screech through the turn. Earnhardt was found to have a blood alcohol concentration of 0.193%, over twice the legal limit of .08%. According to the complaint, he told Cpl. R.C. Basford that he had two shots of liquor at a local bar.
After his arrest, Earnhardt was charged with misdemeanor driving under the influence (first offense), according to the complaint filed with the Kanawha County Magistrate Court. In the complaint Basford wrote that Earnhardt had glassy eyes, that his speech was slurred, and that there was an odor of alcohol inside his vehicle.
In a post on his Facebook page, Earnhardt wrote, "I wanted to let you all know I made a terrible mistake last night drinking and driving and I am thankful nothing bad happened from my stupidity and I know it could have." He also said that he was sorry for letting all of his fans, friends and family down and that he hopes he can "make it up to each and every one of you and in the future be a good role model."
On the eve of his arrest, Earnhardt spent the night in the South Central Regional Jail and was released Tuesday morning after his arraignment. If he is convicted of DUI in West Virginia, he faces up to six months in jail and up to $500 in fines.
The 25-year-old is the nephew of Dale Earnhardt Jr., the grandson of Dale Earnhardt, and son of Kerry Earnhardt. Bobby Dale Earnhardt recently moved to Charleston from Rockingham, North Carolina with the intention of gaining driving experience and ultimately competing in NASCAR races. According to his website, he plans to race in the 2013 ARCA Truck Series. On his Facebook post, Earnhardt told friends and fans that he plans on moving forward with his racing career.
It certainly sounds like Earnhardt learned from his mistake, and hopefully he will be able to use this experience to send a message to thousands of fans, warning them about the dangers of drinking and driving.