Goshen News, Goshen, IN

State News

March 17, 2014

Colts owner Jim Irsay has double image in media

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Colts owner Jim Irsay is known in NFL circles as a tough businessman and eccentric billionaire who enjoys interacting with fans about his beloved team and favorite songs from bands like the Beatles and the Grateful Dead.

He may end up adding convicted felon to the mix.

Irsay was pulled over near his home in suburban Carmel just before midnight Sunday by police who said they found multiple prescription drugs inside his vehicle. He was spotted driving slowly, stopping in the roadway and failing to use a turn signal, and police said Irsay failed several roadside field sobriety tests before he was arrested.

The drugs weren't associated with any of the pill bottles found inside, police said. Some weren't even in bottles.

The 54-year-old Irsay, who acknowledged a painkiller dependency more than a decade ago, faces preliminary charges of misdemeanor driving while intoxicated and four felony counts of possession of a controlled substance.

If Irsay is charged and convicted on the felony counts, he could face six months to three years in prison on each count. Chief Deputy Prosecutor Andre Miksha said no decision had been made on formal charges and a hearing was set for March 26.

Irsay, whose mug shot was posted on websites for millions to see, said nothing as he left the Hamilton County Jail after posting bond Monday. A short time later, he tweeted: "Deepest thx to family, friends, fans, colleagues for the messages of support, thoughts and prayers. Impossible to tell u how much this means."

An NFL spokesman said Irsay is subject to discipline but didn't elaborate on what that might be. Detroit Lions president Tom Lewand was suspended for 30 days and fined $100,000 in 2010 for violating the NFL's personal conduct policy following his guilty plea to driving while impaired.

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Last weekend (July 12) the Goshen Parks Department held its Kid’s Try-athlon to promote childhood fitness and this week (July 18) the new bicycle trail is open to the fairgrounds in Goshen, offering residents a healthy way to get to the annual agriculture exposition. Have you joined the local fitness movement?

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