Originally posted on The Other Paper  |  Last updated 7/16/13
New Brooklyn Nets head coach Jason Kidd pleaded guilty Tuesday to a misdemeanor drunken driving charge, nearly a year after he smashed his Cadillac SUV into a utility pole on eastern Long Island. The judge placed Kidd on interim probation. In exchange for the guilty plea, Kidd also agreed to speak to Long Island high school students about the dangers of drunken driving. Kidd, who retired as an NBA player after last season, was recently hired to coach the Nets — the team he took to two NBA Finals as a player when the franchise played in New Jersey. "Because of his status as a professional athlete Mr. Kidd is the perfect person to reinforce the important message we've been trying to send, which is don't drink and drive," Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota said in a statement. Police said Kidd crashed his SUV into a telephone pole in the Hamptons community of Water Mill on July 15, 2012. He was treated at a hospital for minor injuries. Defense attorney Ed Burke Jr., said Kidd was returning from a charity function before his accident. A Southampton Town Police report noted the 10-time all-star and Olympic gold medalist was unsteady on his feet, smelled of alcohol and had bloodshot and glassy eyes. The 18-year NBA veteran retired after playing last season the Knicks. He was hired as the Nets' new head coach two weeks later. While playing with Phoenix in 2001, Kidd was arrested on a domestic violence charge, acknowledging he struck his former wife.
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