The saga of Dustin Byfuglien’s August 31 boating DWI on a Minnesota lake is nearly a month old and its still churning out little nuggets seemingly by the day.
Now a police report released Tuesday says Byfuglien’s breathalyzer count was .03, well under the legal limit of .08 in Minnesota, but they still suspected the burly blue liner of being impaired by drugs due to slurred speech and an inability to pass a field sobriety test. Byfuglien admitted to having 2 or 3 glasses of wine at dinner, which he and his party were traveling from at the time they were stopped by police. Noted in the police report was the presence of a brown stain on Byfuglien’s tongue. Byfuglien was stopped by police at a Lake Minnetonka check point because he did not have proper lights on his boat, according to a Winnipeg Free Press report.
Byfuglien would not submit to a blood test, which is why he was arrested. He currently faces an October 21 court date. He faces four criminal counts – (1) Boating while intoxicated, (2) refusing to give a blood or urine sample, (3) not having proper lights on his boat and (4) not supplying enough floatation devices for himself and his passengers. There were a total of four people on the boat at the time.
According to the Free Press report, Byfuglien’s pulse, blood pressure and body temperature were all abnormally high, which, packaged with the presence of the mysterious brown stain, led a police drug recognition expert to believe Byfuglien was under the influence of a controlled substance.
The DWI carries a maximum of 90 days in jail while the refusal to submit a blood or urine test carries a possible sentence of up to one year.
At the time of the Aug 31 arrest, Byfuglien explained his uneven state saying he’d taken a muscle relaxer (a/k/a “downer”) earlier in the day, but could not remember the name of the drug he took.
Also, Byfuglien told police he takes a “handful” of supplements each day from 16-17 different bottles, but could not tell police the names of those supplements or what they were for.
Byfuglien appeared in his first game as a member of the new Jets in Winnipeg Tuesday night. He was quick to make an impression, drilling two Blue Jackets players and dropping the gloves with Cody Bass, all in his first shift. Byfuglien finished with 2 assists in a 6-1 Winnipeg victory.
Combining muscle relaxers and alcohol is not a wise decision. Couple that with, by Byfuglien’s own admission, not knowing exactly what supplements he was taking, its likely the alcohol + downer mix is what caused his impairment. Because Byfuglien didn’t submit blood or urine samples, the prosecutor will never be able to prove otherwise. And no one but Byfuglien, and perhaps his friends present at the time, will ever know for sure.
Still, Byfuglien should be more careful, and aware period, of what he’s putting into his body.