California country music fans may have become familiar with Michael Ray when his ballad ‘Kiss You in the Morning” climbed to the top of the Billboard Country Airplay chart in 2015, but they may not be aware that the 29-year-old singer was taken into custody by police in Florida on drug possession and drunk driving charges during the early morning hours of Dec. 20. His brush with the law began when officers from the Eustis Police Department responded to a minor traffic accident at a fast-food restaurant at approximately 3:00 a.m.
Ray is said to have told the responding police officers that he had rear-ended the car in front of him while waiting at a drive-thru window because his foot had slipped off the brake pedal of his SUV. Officers say that they became suspicious that the country music star may have been impaired when they noticed that his eyes appeared to be bloodshot and that his speech was unclear. Police reports indicate that Ray was taken into custody after failing to complete a series of field sobriety tests.
Media reports suggest that Ray admitted to police that he had been drinking at a nearby bar before getting behind the wheel. The drug possession count was added to the drunk driving charge after police allegedly discovered a small quantity of cannabis oil in one of Ray’s pockets. After being taken into custody and processed at a local police station, Ray was transported to the Lake County Jail. Reports indicate that the singer was later released after posting a $6,000 bond.
Experienced criminal defense attorneys may find it more difficult to negotiate favorable plea agreements when their clients have made spontaneous confessions or incriminating statements to law enforcement. While attorneys may recommend that their clients be polite and courteous to police officers, they could also advise them to answer no questions and make no statements until they have spoken with counsel.
Source: Fox News, “Country singer Michael Ray arrested for DUI at McDonald’s drive-thru, says report”, Staff report, Dec. 20, 2017