A University of Arizona football player was arrested early this morning on suspicion of extreme DUI and other charges, police said.
Sterling Lewis — a junior linebacker — was pulled over by Tucson police at approximately 2:35 a.m. for driving the wrong way on East Broadway, according to Sgt. Fabian Pacheco, a TPD spokesman.
He was cooperating with police until he learned that his vehicle was going to be impounded because his blood alcohol limit was at .15 percent or above, which is considered to be extreme DUI, Pacheco said.
At that time, Lewis began arguing that this was a racial issue and his passenger requested to speak with a supervisor, Pacheco said.
A sergeant responded to the scene and explained that by law, the vehicle had to be impounded and that the consequences had nothing to do with race.
The passenger was satisfied with the answer but Lewis was acting disruptive, being loud and using foul language, Pacheco said. He was also using hand gestures and taunting the officers.
At that point Lewis had already been issued a citation on charges of DUI, DUI above .08, extreme DUI and driving the wrong way on a divided highway.
Because extreme DUI is a misdemeanor charge, Lewis was released at the scene but continued to taunt officers until someone came and drove him away.
UA football coach Mike Stoops was returning from Las Vegas, where he was promoting the December 20th Las Vegas bowl, this morning and was not immediately available for comment.
He is expected to meet the media following today’s football practice.
Lewis is a transfer from Blinn College in Brenham, Texas, where he was MVP in 2007. His hometown is Copperas Cove Texas.
For the 2008 UA football season, he has registered 59 tackles.
Lewis is majoring in sociology.