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Crocker arrested for DUI and hit and run

Recently departed U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Ryan Crocker was arrested earlier this month for driving under the influence and hit and run in his hometown of Spokane, WA. Washington state troopers placed Crocker under arrest the evening of Aug. 14 after he allegedly fled the scene of an accident and registered a blood-alcohol level nearly ...

JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/GettyImages
JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/GettyImages

Recently departed U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Ryan Crocker was arrested earlier this month for driving under the influence and hit and run in his hometown of Spokane, WA.

Washington state troopers placed Crocker under arrest the evening of Aug. 14 after he allegedly fled the scene of an accident and registered a blood-alcohol level nearly twice the legal limit, Washington's KXLY reported today. Crocker was reported to have swiped a semi-tractor trailer with his 2009 Ford Mustang while trying to make a right turn across two lanes of traffic from the leftmost lane. An eyewitness took down his vehicle information and gave it to the police. There were no injuries.

Recently departed U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Ryan Crocker was arrested earlier this month for driving under the influence and hit and run in his hometown of Spokane, WA.

Washington state troopers placed Crocker under arrest the evening of Aug. 14 after he allegedly fled the scene of an accident and registered a blood-alcohol level nearly twice the legal limit, Washington’s KXLY reported today. Crocker was reported to have swiped a semi-tractor trailer with his 2009 Ford Mustang while trying to make a right turn across two lanes of traffic from the leftmost lane. An eyewitness took down his vehicle information and gave it to the police. There were no injuries.

Crocker was placed under arrest and taken to the local precinct, where he blew a 0.16 blood-alcohol level in his first sobriety test. He registered a 0.152 BAC on his second test. The trooper on the scene said that Crocker was noticeably intoxicated but cooperative. He could not have been unaware of the accident, the troopers said.

He posted $1,000 bail for each charge and pleaded not guilty to both charges the next day. Crocker’s next court hearing is Sept. 12 and he has been ordered not to consume alcohol or drugs unless prescribed and he will have to submit to alcohol testing beginning tomorrow.

The State Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

One of America’s most distinguished diplomats. Crocker stepped down as America’s envoy in Kabul last month due to health problems. He had come out of retirement in 2011 to take the Afghanistan job at the personal request of President Barack Obama following a four-decade career in the Foreign Service, during which he served as U.S. ambassador to Iraq, Pakistan, Syria, Kuwait, and Lebanon.

He was dean of the George Bush School of Government and Public Service from 2010 to 2011. President George W. Bush once called him "America’s Lawrence of Arabia." His replacement, former Ambassador to Israel James Cunningham, was confirmed by the Senate Aug. 3 and is in Kabul now.

In June, the White House withdrew Obama’s nominee to be ambassador to the Netherlands Timothy Broas following his arrest for drunk driving and resisting arrest.

Josh Rogin covers national security and foreign policy and writes the daily Web column The Cable. His column appears bi-weekly in the print edition of The Washington Post. He can be reached for comments or tips at josh.rogin@foreignpolicy.com.

Previously, Josh covered defense and foreign policy as a staff writer for Congressional Quarterly, writing extensively on Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantánamo Bay, U.S.-Asia relations, defense budgeting and appropriations, and the defense lobbying and contracting industries. Prior to that, he covered military modernization, cyber warfare, space, and missile defense for Federal Computer Week Magazine. He has also served as Pentagon Staff Reporter for the Asahi Shimbun, Japan's leading daily newspaper, in its Washington, D.C., bureau, where he reported on U.S.-Japan relations, Chinese military modernization, the North Korean nuclear crisis, and more.

A graduate of George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs, Josh lived in Yokohama, Japan, and studied at Tokyo's Sophia University. He speaks conversational Japanese and has reported from the region. He has also worked at the House International Relations Committee, the Embassy of Japan, and the Brookings Institution.

Josh's reporting has been featured on CNN, MSNBC, C-Span, CBS, ABC, NPR, WTOP, and several other outlets. He was a 2008-2009 National Press Foundation's Paul Miller Washington Reporting Fellow, 2009 military reporting fellow with the Knight Center for Specialized Journalism and the 2011 recipient of the InterAction Award for Excellence in International Reporting. He hails from Philadelphia and lives in Washington, D.C. Twitter: @joshrogin

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