From Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, we learn that Pirates president Frank Coonelly has been charged with four counts related to drunken driving. Coonelly was arrested on Dec. 22 and charged him with drunken driving, driving the wrong way, careless driving and driving with a blood-alcohol content of at least .16.
That is some big league drunk driving. Coonelly has released a statement:
“My actions that evening were irresponsible and wrong. I take full and sole responsibility for them. There is no excuse for ever driving under the influence of alcohol. My wife and I have preached to our children about the dangers of driving while under the influence of alcohol, not only for themselves but for the innocent drivers, passengers and pedestrians on the road. I am embarrassed that I failed to follow this advice myself on this occasion and extremely grateful no one was injured or adversely affected by this serious lapse of judgment.”
“I have apologized to my wife and children, to Bob Nutting and to all of those at the Pirates organization who work so tirelessly for the club. I would also like to apologize to all of the fans and friends of the Pittsburgh Pirates. My conduct that night was uncharacteristic to my personally held values and not who I am. I will learn from this serious lapse of judgment.”
Coonelly is easily the highest-ranking baseball figure to be charged with drunk driving. Not only is he the Pirates’ team president, but he spent a decade as general counsel for Major League Baseball.