By John Boyle
Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch will plead guilty Friday to a charge of wet reckless driving, bringing closure to a driving under the influence case that dates back to a 2012 arrest.
Lynch’s attorney, Ivan Golde, believes his client could have won a trial based on inconsistencies in the case, but didn’t want to subject Lynch to the publicity of a trial with a reckless driving deal available.
“We had a lot to work with, there were all sorts of issues,” Golde said. “We could have won the case. Plus, with his celebrity, he’s from Oakland, there’s no way they would have convicted him. I’d say there’s a 90 percent chance we would have gotten an acquittal or hung jury. Ninety percent, but for case like this, it just didn’t make any sense for him to have to sit in court for a week and a half.
“After a successful season and other endorsements, it would be negative publicity. After all the positive things that have happened to Marshawn, for a case like this where he can get a wet reckless and probably avoid suspension, why go through a public trial after all of that?”
Lynch was arrested on July 14, 2012 after being pulled over on Interstate 880 in Oakland. According to the California Highway Patrol incident report, Lynch was weaving from lane to lane in a van and showed “objective signs of intoxication” while taking a field sobriety test.
With a wet reckless driving plea, which is essentially a lesser version of a DUI, Lynch faces no jail time, but will pay a fine and face two years of probation. He also must complete six driving safety classes, but will not have his license suspended, Golde said.
“He came out of it OK,” Golde said.
Golde is hopeful that the NFL will not suspend Lynch for a guilty plea to this reduced charge: “I hope and I think there won’t be any NFL suspension in this case.”