If you have adolescent kids in your house who watch the Disney Channel, than you have probably caught a glimpse or two of the hit TV shows “Jessie” and “The Sweet Life on Deck.” Unfortunately, the super starlet of these shows, 22 year-old Debbie Ryan, who plays Jessie on “Jessie” was recently arrested and charged with felony DUI.
According to LA police, Ryan allegedly made a left hand turn and crashed her 2016 Audi into a Mercedes Benz. When police arrived they suspected Ryan of driving under the influence of alcohol asked her to take the DUI field sobriety tests. Shortly after, the TV actress was arrested for DUI. To make matters worse, the driver of the Benz was claiming they were injured during the accident which increased the charge to a felony DUI charge.
In California it is standard procedure for a misdemeanor DUI charge to be increased to a felony DUI charge if an injury is involved.
Here in Washington State, a misdemeanor DUI charge may be charged as a felony vehicular assault charge (RCW 46.61.522) if a person drives a motor vehicle “while under the influence” of alcohol, as defined by RCW 46.61.502, and “causes substantial bodily harm to another.”
Luckily, authorities decided to reduce the felony DUI down to a misdemeanor DUI since the Mercedes driver was not seriously injured and since Ryan’s DUI breath test was fairly low at .11, which is just slightly above California’s legal BAC limit of .08.
Earlier today, Ryan tweeted about the arrest, “Over the last few days I have had the chance to think about my actions, and I wish I had used better judgement. I recognize that I am a role model and have always worked hard to set a good example for my millions of fans. I am so sorry to disappoint everyone.”
Even Disney TV stars can make mistakes! It sounds like this Disney princess is remorseful and will likely learn her lesson as she and her DUI attorney navigate through her DUI case.