INDIANAPOLIS: Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay was suspended for six games by the National Football League after pleading guilty yesterday to a misdemeanor charge of operating a vehicle while intoxicated.
Irsay was also fined $500,000 (380,750 euro) by the league for the personal conduct policy violation which happened in March this year while he was also handed a year on probation by an Indiana court.
“Owners, management personnel and coaches must be held to a higher standard than players,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said.
The 55-year-old son of Robert Irsay, who moved the Colts from Baltimore to Indianapolis in 1984, also had his drivers’ license suspended.
The fine was the largest Goodell was allowed to impose without seeking permission from the other NFL club owners and the ban is the largest against an NFL owner since a 1998 felony conviction led to a one-year suspension for former San Francisco 49ers owner Edward DeBartolo.
Irsay entered a change of plea Tuesday at the Hamilton County courthouse in suburban Noblesville after previously pleading not guilty to two misdemeanors stemming from a traffic stop in nearby Carmel, Indiana.
Police said Irsay was driving his car at a slow rate of speed and failed to signal for a turn. He failed several field sobriety tests before being taken into custody.
Multiple prescription drugs were found in pill bottles during an search of Irsay’s vehicle and a toxicology report showed Tuesday that Irsay had two painkillers in his system, according to the Indianapolis Star.
Irsay will be tested for drugs while on probation and cannot have or drink alcoholic beverages during probation.
He was sentenced to jail time but the amount was reduced to time served, the two days he spent in jail after his arrest.