Minnesota Viking arrested for DUI in Minneapolis

Another professional athlete has found himself in legal trouble. Minnesota Vikings player Tyrell Johnson, 26, was reportedly arrested for suspicion of drunk driving early this morning. Therefore, it is very early in what could become an official DWI charge against the safety, though he shouldn’t hesitate to take the situation seriously as soon as possible.

As we have learned through other criminal cases against professional athletes, their futures playing with their teams are put at risk when they become defendants in criminal cases. For an NFL player, for example, a criminal conviction can mean more than criminal sentencing, it can mean temporary suspension from getting on the football field.

According to the Star Tribune, Johnson was pulled over in Minneapolis in the early morning. Why police decided to pull him over is not disclosed, but that detail is significant in a potential DWI charge. Law enforcement must have a reasonable reason to pull over a suspect before they can investigate the situation and treat it as a possible DUI case.

Johnson reportedly submitted to a preliminary breath test, which means he blew into the breathalyzer device during the traffic stop. According to Minnesota implied consent law, a person does not legally have to submit to the breath test until he or she is arrested and in custody of law enforcement. Johnson’s BAC level reportedly measured in at 0.12, above the legal limit of 0.08. Of course, mistakes happen when relying on mechanical devices, and an effective DWI defense attorney would understand that reality.

We will follow this matter and post an update with any new developments.


Star Tribune: “Patrol: Vikings safety Johnson’s alcohol breath test measured 0.12,” Mark Craig, Sep. 20, 2011

He has won jury trial cases in misdemeanor and felony cases and in DWI’s and non-DWI’s. He is a member of the Minnesota Society for Criminal Justice, which only allows the top 50 criminal defense attorneys in the state as members. He is a frequent speaker at CLE’s and is often asked for advice by other defense attorneys across Minnesota.

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