HOOVER, Ala. — Georgia defensive lineman Jonathan Ledbetter was found asleep in his car in Athens on Sunday morning, when a subsequent breath test led to the sophomore being arrested on misdemeanor DUI charges.
Ledbetter’s breath alcohol level on two different tests were recorded as .131 and .138, according to an arrest report provided by the Athens-Clarke County Police Department. The legal limit in Georgia is .08.
Police were called to the scene after a caller reported a car blocking traffic at the intersection of Barnett Shoals and Lexington Road. The car was still running, and Ledbetter was asleep inside.
It took more than a half-hour to wake up Ledbetter, according to the report. At one point an officer even turned on his siren, to no avail. Even when officers opened the car – using a lock jock – and tapped Ledbetter, he only woke up “for a brief moment” then went back to sleep.
It’s not clear what actually worked: The incident report blacks out a sentence, so it reads: “After several attempts at (blacked out) and that finally did the trick.”
Ledbetter was informed he had been sleeping for awhile, and asked if he had been drinking, he replied: “Yes sir, I’m at home.” He later told the officer he had been drinking “downtown” just after midnight, and had drank a couple Bud Light Platinum beers.
A field sobriety test was then conducted. During the test, the officer asked if he’d be willing to submit to a breath test. The report then states:
“(Ledbetter) proceeded to explain that he knows what’s going on in the world now with cops shooting black people and he also said that he wanted to know if he passed the test or not so that he could just take his boys home. There was no one in the car except for Mr. Ledbetter when I arrived on scene. He also explained that he feels like this is a hate crime. I asked Mr. Ledbetter again if he would be willing to submit to the breath test and he said, ‘I will submit to any test that you want me to do.’ He expressed that he plays football for UGA and that he does not need to get into any more trouble because he is going to get kicked off of the team and that he needs to provide for his mother and family.”
Ledbetter did eventually submit to the breathalyzer. He was booked into Athens-Clarke County jail at 6:05 a.m. and released on $2,000 bond a few hours later.
Georgia has yet to release any information on discipline for Ledbetter, though a DUI charge carries a mandatory two-game suspension. Ledbetter was also arrested in March on charges related to trying to enter a club with a fake ID, but those charges were dismissed.