Miami-Dade prosecutors dropped the driving under the influence charge Tuesday against Tracy Wilson Mourning, the entrepreneur and wife of retired Miami Heat star Alonzo Mourning.
Prosecutors concluded that they could not prove the charge beyond all reasonable doubt, and Wilson Mourning’s charge was reduced to a traffic citation of careless driving, which she pleaded no contest to on Tuesday, a closeout memorandum from the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office said.
She will have to complete 50 hours of community service, and complete classes about drunk driving consequences and a victim impact program called You Impact, prosecutors said.
Wilson Mourning was arrested in February after an officer said he saw her speeding, making an improper right turn and weaving on the road, a Miami-Dade Police arrest affidavit said.
The officer wrote that Wilson Mourning had alcohol on her breath, bloodshot eyes, and slow, slurred speech. He arrested her at about 3:53 a.m. at the intersection of Old Cutler Road and San Servando Avenue in Coral Gables, the affidavit said.
During the February incident, Wilson Mourning, who was driving a 2010 Porsche Panamera, accelerated to 48 mph in a 20 mph zone on Southwest 37th Avenue, the affidavit said.
When the officer first told her that she had been speeding, she winked and said, “I was going fast, wasn’t I?” according to the affidavit.
The officer said she made an improper right turn onto Ingraham Highway. The traffic signal was dark at the time, but instead of stopping, Wilson Mourning made the turn at 38 mph, according to the affidavit.
Then, while driving south on Ingraham Highway, she weaved from side to side within her lane and sped up to 50 mph in a 30-mph zone, the affidavit said. The state's investigation found, however, that the road where Wilson Mourning wandered within her lane "is a winding road, and the opposing lanes of traffic are somewhat narrow, making it more difficult to maintain the lane," the closeout memo said.
In his affidavit the officer said that while standing next to her open window, he noticed the indicators that she had been drinking, and asked if she had been.
“She said she was coming from dinner with some ‘amazing friends’ but that she had not been drinking,” he wrote.
He arrested her after she failed a sobriety test, and she refused to take a Breathalyzer test on the scene, according to the affidavit.
Roadside exercises that Wilson Mourning performed were inconclusive about whether she was impaired, the closeout memo said.
"The strongest evidence the state had was the defendant's consciousness of guilt – in the fact that the defendant refused to submit to an intoxilyzer examination," said the memo. It noted that Wilson Mourning refused to take the intoxilyzer test at the police station after she "quite lucidly" inquired whether she would be arrested if she took the test and it showed no alcohol in her system, and was told that regardless of the result, she would be arrested for DUI.
But when prosecutors balanced their strongest evidence against several other findings – including Wilson Mourning's lucid and polite demeanor throughout the night and the complicating conditions of the areas where the traffic stop was made and where the roadside exercises were conducted – they concluded that they could not prove the charge beyond all reasonable doubt.
They also cited the uncontested testimony of defense witnesses who said that Wilson Mourning had had wine with dinner some 8-10 hours before the incident, but because she was a designated driver, she drank only bottled water after that.
Wilson Mourning is the president and CEO of Honey Child by TWM, a line of all-natural beauty products that celebrate women.
Wilson Mourning is well-known as a community philanthropist. She founded the Honey Shine Mentoring Program for at-risk girls in 2002, and a North Miami high school was named after her husband and her in 2009.
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