NASCAR chairman and CEO Brian France was arrested Sunday night and charged with driving while intoxicated and criminal possession of a controlled substance, according to multiple reports Monday morning.
TMZ, the first to report the news, stated France was pulled over at 7:30 p.m. after running through a stop sign in Sag Harbor, N.Y., in the Hamptons. The report said France failed a field sobriety test, with sources telling the outlet France’s blood alcohol level was more than twice the legal limit.
ESPN’s Bob Pockrass, citing a news release from the Sag Harbor Village Police Department, reported that France was held overnight, arraigned at Sag Harbor Village Justice Court on Monday morning, and released on his own recognizance.
“Mr. France was observed operating a 2017 Lexus northbound on Main Street failing to stop at a duly posted stop sign,” ESPN quoted the news release as saying. “Upon traffic stop, it was determined that Mr. France was operating said vehicle in an intoxicated condition.
“Upon search of his person, due to a lawful arrest, Mr. France was in possession of oxycodone pills.”
Later Monday, NASCAR issued a statement, per ESPN:
“We are aware of an incident that occurred last night and are in the process of gathering information. We take this as a serious matter and will issue a statement after we have all of the facts.”
France, 56, has been chairman and CEO of the family-run league since 2003. His grandfather, William H.G. France, founded NASCAR and his father, Bill France Jr., was in charge of the league before the youngest France took over. In May, it was reported that the France family was exploring the possible sale of NASCAR.