Former Detroit Pistons star Ben Wallace yesterday pleaded no contest to leaving the scene of an accident.
A Virginia judge sentenced Wallace to one year behind bars for failing to stop for a crash causing $500 or more in damages, but suspended all but two days of that term. Wallace, a Virginia resident, began serving the sentence immediately which presumably means he will be released from custody sometime today or tomorrow. The court also ordered him to pay $611 in fines and costs.
The plea deal stems from an incident in the early morning hours of February 8 in Henrico County, Va. “Police determined that a black Cadillac Escalade left the road, smashed through a wooden privacy fence and struck a tree. The vehicle’s driver had left the scene.” Cops reportedly determined that Ben Wallace was the driver and registered owner.
According to a witness at the time of the crash, “It was dark, but it’s clear from here I saw one person trying to fight to get out of the car.” The witness added that the motorist smashed pieces of wood against the fence because he was angry.
In September 2011, Ben Wallace was charged with DUI in suburban Detroit. He subsequently pled guilty to related misdemeanor charges and was put on probation.
Ben Wallace played in the NBA from 1996 to 2012, mostly with the Detroit Pistons where he won a NBA title in 2004. A defensive specialist with minimal offensive skills, Wallace was a four-time NBA All Star, a four-time NBA defensive player of the year, and a two-time NBA rebounding champion. After playing college ball at Virginia Union University, he was signed as a undrafted free agent by the-then Washington Bullets. In addition to two stints with the Detroit Pistons, Wallace also was a member of the Orlando Magic, Chicago Bulls, and Cleveland Cavaliers over his pro basketball career.
[image credit: Jauerback]