On January 5, former NBA star Jayson Williams with charged with driving under the influence after a single-vehicle crash in which his SUV veered off an exit ramp and collided with a tree, according to police.
Williams, who is awaiting a retrial on a New Jersey manslaughter case, sustained a minor bone fracture in his neck and cuts to his face, according to authorities.
Police say when officers arrived, he was in the passenger seat and said that someone else had been driving. However, witnesses told police that they saw him in the driver’s seat and officers saw no other occupants in the vehicle.
Police say Williams appeared to have been drinking prior to the 3:15 a.m. crash. He received transport to Bellevue Hospital, where he refused to submit to a breath test. Police requested a warrant to test blood taken by hospital officials for alcohol content.
Williams was charged with DUI at his hospital bed.
Williams spent a decade in the NBA playing for the New Jersey Nets before a broken leg led to his retirement in 2000. He later became an NBA analyst for NBC, but was suspended after a hired driver was shot to death in his house in February 2002.
In that incident, witnesses say that Williams had been drinking and was showing off a shotgun in his bedroom when he snapped the weapon shut and it fired one shot that struck the driver, Costas Christofi, in the chest. They also say Williams initially placed the weapon in the victim’s hands and told those present to lie about what happened.
A jury deadlocked on a reckless manslaughter count, acquitted Williams of aggravated manslaughter, and convicted him of covering up the shooting. He was never sentenced for the cover-up counts, pending the retrial’s outcome, and has remained free on bail.
In 2009, Williams’ wife filed for divorce and police used a stun gun on him in a New York hotel after a female friend said he was acting suicidal. In May, he was charged with assault after allegedly punching a man in this face outside of a bar in North Carolina, but those charges were dropped. His father, E.J., died in South Carolina in November.