Cardinals suspend executive Ron Minegar after DUI arrest

Aug 27, 2019, 6:54 PM | Updated: Aug 28, 2019, 10:58 am

Ron Minegar. (Chandler Police Department mugshot)...

Ron Minegar. (Chandler Police Department mugshot)

(Chandler Police Department mugshot)

The Arizona Cardinals have suspended executive vice president and chief operations officer Ron Minegar for six weeks without pay and fined him $200,000 after he was arrested on suspicion of DUI on Aug. 10, the team announced in a statement on Tuesday.

“Ron Minegar has been suspended for six weeks and fined $200,000 which will be donated to the Arizona chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD),” the Cardinals said in a statement. “During the suspension, he is excluded from all business operations and prohibited from attending team functions or facilities.

“Minegar, who has been away from the team since the August 10th incident, will not be able to return until he has completed several additional steps. These include but are not limited to an alcohol assessment, counseling and mandatory DUI education as well as community service.

“As stated previously, the decision to drive after drinking alcohol is inexcusable. It is a serious offense that far too often has tragic results. We are incredibly grateful that did not occur in this instance. However, the behavior calls for severe consequences and these disciplinary measures demonstrate that. They also reflect that all those who work for the Cardinals and within the National Football League are held to a standard higher than simply a legal one.”

Minegar’s blood alcohol content (BAC) following arrest was 0.199, more than twice the legal limit of 0.08, the Chandler Police Department told KTAR News 92.3 FM on Wednesday.

Minegar served two days in jail prior to being released.

“I understand that there are no words that will make up for the extraordinarily reckless and dangerous decision I made to drive a vehicle after drinking,” Minegar said in a statement.

“That said, I sincerely and deeply apologize to the people close to me – both personally and professionally – for what they’ve had to endure because of this. I also recognize that for those whose lives have been impacted by a drunk driver, my actions may have stirred painful emotions and to them I apologize as well.

“I take total responsibility for my actions. I know better and I am embarrassed that I did not do better. Right now, I am fully committed to taking all steps to ensure it will not ever happen again. In the future, I recognize that it will be my actions, not my words, that will ultimately be judged.”

Minegar is entering his 20th season with the Cardinals.

He was pulled over around 11:30 p.m. on Aug. 10 by an officer who observed him speeding, failing to stay in a lane and driving in the bicycle lane.

According to a police report, a witness who called police followed Minegar’s vehicle to assist police.

The witness told officers that the Chevy Tahoe that Minegar was driving was traveling 60-65 mph, driving in and out of lanes and erratically switching lanes. The witness stated that the Tahoe nearly collided with a motorcycle, which had to take “evasive actions to avoid being hit,” and also came close to running into a sidewalk.

Once pulled over, Minegar admitted to police that he consumed three or four drinks that evening. Multiple officers noted that he had alcohol on his breath, slurred speech, bloodshot eyes and a flushed face.

One officer issued a horizontal gaze nystagmus test and had to instruct Minegar multiple times not to move his head and to follow a pen with his eyes only. Minegar lost his balance during the test, and officers had to catch him while falling.

Minegar was also issued a walk-and-turn test and a one-leg stand test, both of which were ended by officers to avoid him from injuring himself, as his balance was poor. Minegar refused a breath test and was taken to a station for processing.

His suspension comes after several off-the-field issues for the franchise in the past year-plus.

General manager Steve Keim pleaded guilty to extreme DUI in July 2018 and was suspended five weeks.

Among players, former defensive lineman Robert Nkemdiche was arrested on June 6 for speeding and driving on a suspended license. He was also pulled over a second time on June 12 after police ran his license plate number and saw it was suspended. Nkemdiche was released in late July.

Darius Philon, a free agent signing to bolster the defensive line, was released on Aug. 10 after he was arrested the day prior for one count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

Waiver-wire pickup Desmond Harrison was released on July 17 after being charged with assault on a person by strangulation and assault on a female by a male.


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