Oct 01, 2014 01:36 AM EDT
With the most decorated Olympic career in the sport of swimming, earning 18 Olympic gold medals while only in his 20's, Michael Phelps was once America's golden boy. But, with a known knack for lapses in judgment, he may soon find his legacy sinking in the pool under the weight of yet another DUI.
Arrested early Tuesday morning, Sept. 30, Phelps was charged with driving under the influence by Maryland Transportation Authority after being pulled over for driving 84 in a 45-mph zone. Pulled over on the northbound side of Interstate-395 on the Fort McHenry tunnel in his white Land Rover, Phelps failed a series of sobriety field tests before officers discovered that he had more than twice the legal limit of alcohol in his system.
And while the jury in the court of public opinion may still be out, Phelps is not likely to be let off easy this time around. Coming 10 years after his first DUI arrest at the age of 19, when the gold medalist ran a stop sign while under the influence behind the wheel of his brand new Land Rover, this second DUI shows even poorer choices as colleagues and competitors speak out against his less than Olympic lapse in judgment.
Fellow Olympian Ryan Lochte spoke out to TMZ this morning regarding the news of the DUI, saying "He has so much money to get a driver; I even have a driver. It just stinks for the sport of swimming."
"I'm not concerned about [Phelps], he just makes dumb decisions. But he will become smarter from this" Lochte says. "Luckily he did not hurt himself or someone else."
While it is still too early to know the full extent of what the backlash will be from these newest headlines, Phelps can likely expect a repeat much like the 2009 incident when images surfaced of the Olympian using a bong which led to major drops in endorsement deals like the cancellation of his Wheaties box cover from major retail grocery stores. Though only a few hours out of the slammer, Phelps has already taken to social media, and issued an informal apology view twitter only moments ago.
"Earlier this morning, I was arrested and charged with DUI, excessive speeding and crossing double lane lines" Phelps tweeted. "I understand the severity of my actions and take full responsibility. I know these words may not mean much right now, but I am deeply sorry to everyone I have let down."
Phelps is expected to appear in court early next month.
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