Local

Football Star Lorenzo Neal busted for DUI

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

A potential NFL Hall of Famer is in trouble with the law after a 4th of July accident on a Fresno County road.

Lorenzo Neal was one of more than 100 people arrested by CHP officers for DUI in Fresno County over the holiday weekend.

Action News talked to some of Neal's friends Tuesday. They say he's taking responsibility for doing something stupid, and he's mainly happy nobody got hurt.

From a distance, it's hard to see any damage on Lorenzo Neal's truck as it sat in the lot of a tow truck company. But a closer inspection revealed a couple dents and some broken plastic on the Ford F150.

California Highway Patrol officers say the damage happened as Neal tried to turn right from Copper onto Minnewawa -- an intersection where officers say a lot of drivers have missed the turn.

"[He] just ran off the road, struck a pole," said CHP Officer Axel Reyes. "Nothing real major about it. Luckily, he didn't hit anyone and no one else was with him as a passenger."

Neal told friends he'd just left the Copper River golf course where he had a few drinks. He didn't think he was impaired, but an officer at the scene of the accident gave him a breathalyzer.

"A basic field sobriety test determined he was driving under the influence and then placed him under arrest," Reyes said.

The officer put Neal in his patrol car, but because nobody was hurt and Neal's blood alcohol content was just a couple points above the legal limit, Neal was released to a friend instead of going to jail. But the former star fullback for Fresno State and seven NFL teams managed to draw a crowd before he left the scene.

"We heard it was Lorenzo Neal and then we looked it up online and the picture online was the dude we just saw getting hassled by the cops," said Kevin Spring, who stopped at the accident scene with a couple friends celebrating the holiday.

Prosecutors haven't filed DUI charges against Neal yet. But his friends tell Action News he's hiring an attorney.

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Tags:
dui, fresno, fresno county, crimetracker, california highway patrol, local, corin hoggard
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