La Russa pleads guilty to drunk-driving charge
St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa on Wednesday pleaded guilty to driving under the influence, saying it was in the best interest of all concerned.
On March 22, La Russa was found asleep in his sport utility vehicle in Jupiter, Fla., and arrested on suspicion of drunken driving.
"I accept full responsibility for my conduct, and assure everyone that I have learned a very valuable lesson and that this will never occur again," La Russa, 63, said in a statement released by his lawyer, David Roth. La Russa did not appear in court.
As part of his plea agreement, La Russa will serve at least six months probation, pay a $678.50 US fine, complete DUI school and any recommended treatment, and complete 50 hours of community service, according to state prosecutors.
At the time of his arrest, Jupiter police said the four-time manager of the year gave two breath samples and had a blood-alcohol content of 0.093 per cent. Florida's legal driving limit is 0.08 per cent.
Undercover officers first saw La Russa's SUV partially in an intersection around midnight and not moving despite several green lights, police had said. Officers knocked on the vehicle's window and La Russa did not initially respond.
The SUV was in drive and running, with La Russa's foot on the brake, police said. When he eventually woke up, the officers asked him to get out of the SUV.
He was booked in the Palm Beach County jail on the misdemeanour count about four hours later and released after posting a $500 cash bond.
La Russa led the Cardinals to a World Series championship in 2006, his first since 1989 with the Oakland Athletics.
La Russa has also won three other pennants in his 28 seasons in the majors with the Chicago White Sox, Oakland and St. Louis and is third on the career wins list with 2,375.
With files from the Associated Press