Vikings' Erin Henderson suing state over 3 a.m. DWI arrest

ErinHendersonMug.jpg
:::: UPDATE :::: KARE reports that Henderson was also arrested for possessing a controlled substance: At 3:19 a.m. on November 19, Vikings linebacker Erin Henderson was pulled over in Eden Prairie and arrested on suspicion of DWI. His blood alcohol level was 0.11.

SEE ALSO: Vikings are still NFL's most arrested team [GRAPHIC]

According to a Pioneer Press report, there's no record of Henderson being booked into jail (UPDATE -- The mugshot at top of this post has since been released), and he hasn't been charged with a crime. Nonetheless, his driver's license was revoked yesterday, and now, he's suing the Minnesota Department of Public Safety to get it back.

Henderson alleges officers violated his constitutional rights by arresting him for no good reason. The PiPress explains:
The second-year starter contends police did not have "articulable grounds to make an investigatory stop" and did not have "reasonable and probable cause" to believe he had violated Minnesota's implied consent laws.

Henderson retained defense attorney David Valentini to represent him in Hennepin County. The Viking claims in his petition he was driving under the posted speed limit, was not driving erratically and did not fail field sobriety tests conducted after he was pulled over.

Henderson claims Eden Prairie police officer Bryan Dean told him refusal to submit to breath or blood testing was a crime, "rendering the threat unconstitionally erroneous and coercive," according to his petition.
The state's "implied consent" law states cops may order a sobriety test "when an officer has probable cause to believe the person was driving, operating, or in physical control of a motor vehicle," if there's probable cause to believe the driver was intoxicated when pulled over.

:::: UPDATE :::: Rick Spielman reacts to Vikings having more players arrested this month than wins all season

But even if his lawsuit is successful, the damage may have already been done to Henderson's career. In the days following the arrest last week, he missed practice for "personal reasons" and didn't play during last Sunday's game against Green Bay. Unheralded second-year player Audie Cole got the start at middle linebacker instead, and following an impressive performance (13 tackles and a sack), coach Leslie Frazier suggested he'll be the starter going forward.

News of Henderson's arrest means three Vikings have been arrested this month alone. (Jerome Simpson and the since-released A.J. Jefferson were the other two.) That stat doesn't exactly get the purple pride flowing through your veins, does it?

Correction -- A previous version of the article misrepresented Minnesota's "implied consent" law. We regret the error.

-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at arupar@citypages.com.


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57 comments
Chris Welton
Chris Welton

This just shows there is no accountability or leadership on this team or in the coaching staff. This reminds me of the Boston Red Sox a couple years ago

Sheryl Ekberg
Sheryl Ekberg

Quit wasting our $. You did the crime be an adult and own it

k2yeb
k2yeb topcommenter

Are we sure the defense isn't playing drunk?

Chris Peden
Chris Peden

You would think with all the money he's making he could afford a cab.

John Doyle
John Doyle

Suing the state over 6 a.m. DWI arrest? Good luck with that!!

Tanner Slade Olson
Tanner Slade Olson

Where are these idiots drivers? The nfl even has a free service for them.

Ran Dazzle
Ran Dazzle

what does it matter why the pulled him over? he was over the limit..quit your whining pay your fine and go back to making millions..if you even get in trouble because your in the NFL and rules don't apply to them

Stephen Biondo
Stephen Biondo

Luke Howat, "thugs" beat their wives, like that other asshole on the team. Thug is an appropriate term for this type of mentality. I guess it hurts that your heroes are criminals, huh?

Luke Howat
Luke Howat

Thugs because of a DWI?? Cmon now Dale

Marcos Maiero
Marcos Maiero

Drunk driving at 6 a.m.? He should be at home, beating his wife!

Jeff Huinker
Jeff Huinker

Gives them the reason they were looking for to cut him.

Steve Hogen
Steve Hogen

If it was only warmer out we could have rented a boat to keep the dumb asses off the roads. Oh that didn't work either. At least they're not beating their girl friends and wives - dooh!

Jason Cinderfoot Hare
Jason Cinderfoot Hare

I think he missed last week according to coach for personal reasons maybe those personal reasons were a week stay at hazelden?

Dale Burback
Dale Burback

we should be building a new jailhouse instead of a stadium for these thugs

Doug Farone
Doug Farone

He might have been drinking but I think the police drop the ball on this case so he has the right to sue the state(just my opinion, and not looking for a debate either)

strangeterrain
strangeterrain

Your article misrepresents the statute it cites. You say that the police can require a sobriety test regardless of whether the person was violating traffic laws, so long as they have probable cause to believe that the person was driving. That is incorrect.

According to section 169A.51, a chemical test may be required if there is probable cause to believe the person was driving AND the person was lawfully arrested for DWI, the person was in a serious car accident, the person refused a valid preliminary breath test (which requires an initial reason to suspect DWI), or the person took a preliminary breath test and blew a .08 or higher.

Yes, Minnesota drivers impliedly consent to testing, but police cannot give anyone on the road a breath test at any time. That is why DWI checkpoints are unconstitutional in Minnesota.

Gretchen Dahl
Gretchen Dahl

Fine, MN Vikings players, drown your sorrows with drinking but just stay put and off the roads!

Jason Morin
Jason Morin

Dumbass u were over the limit that's when u committed a crime

Brad Omland
Brad Omland

Didn't think this season would cause the players to drink more than the fans!

Tom Fru
Tom Fru

He wouldn't have gotten pulled over if he lived in the city.

Jodi Oien
Jodi Oien

"Not driving erratically" says the legally drunk meathead.

jordanhanson
jordanhanson

Isn't it a state law that if you refuse a blood and urine test your license is revoked?  Either way getting pulled over for possible DUI at 6AM is your fault.  Plus these teams have plenty of other ways to get home.

Laura Gee
Laura Gee

If you do the crime, pay the fine. Don't make taxpayers foot the bill for this dumb lawsuit.

Rick Kantorowicz
Rick Kantorowicz

Heck, maybe they should stop drinking and start playing football

Christina Callahan
Christina Callahan

Maybe they should all stop drinking and driving and people will like them more.

Pang Yang
Pang Yang

This dumb. They can't revoke your license without booking you for dui first. The law os so dumb sometimes and police over do it. I got pulled over once for going over speed limit just by 2 speed. He force me to do breathalyzer test nd the whole stupid test for nothing. Of course I pass.

Mike Horn
Mike Horn

Don't drink and drive and you won't get arrested

midwestexplorer81
midwestexplorer81 topcommenter

There's a lot of luck actually. I had a DUI in 07 which I am ashamed of now and will never repeat again but anyways I hired a high buck lawyer and kept my license for years after, I kept my car, was able to drive myself to court, able to drive myself to treatment while the others had to get rides or couldn't make it and went to jail. I had enough money I practically got off scott free. His lawyer wouldn't do anything if he wouldn't get something out of it. Oh and when I did have to appear in court I was first in line because I had a lawyer while all the schmucks with a public defender had to sit there all day long. Money talks, people with money walk. My lawyer totally sued the the DMV and it resulted in me keeping my license for three years after my guilty plea in criminal court so that by the time I did lose my license it barely affected me. I'm not proud of all this today but if you make a mistake and learn from it and want to get off without ruining your life get a lawyer, they make all the difference. I'm making the most of my second chance which I was fortunate to get because of bias in the system. If I hadn't had money at the time I would still be F'ed to this day over that charge, as it is now I'm free and clear and sober.

lhowat33
lhowat33

@Stephen Biondo Cook certainly is a thug and should be cut, shouldve been cut already.  Im guessing you have never had a drop and drove.  I agree its incredibly stupid, but this guy has never been known for "beating his wife" etc.  Heroes?  Right......



atrupar
atrupar moderator

@strangeterrain You're right, I misread the statute. I've appended a correction and changed that paragraph. Thanks.

Anonymous13
Anonymous13

Mr. Henderson also should have taken advantage of the FREE car service the team provides to players that have been drinking.

digitalprotocol
digitalprotocol topcommenter

@Tom Fru he has to go to EP to practice bud, they all live around EP

idiocracyisnow
idiocracyisnow

@jordanhanson If you refuse the portable breathalyzer you can lose your license for a year.  I don't think you can refuse the breath, blood or urine tests at the police station.

idiocracyisnow
idiocracyisnow

@Pang Yang With alcohol related arrests there are two punishments- civil and criminal.  They can take your license under the civil penalty regardless of the outcome of any criminal proceedings.  You are basically assumed guilty in the civil proceeding.

Also, they can't force you to do the breathalyzer without suspecting intoxication (sobriety tests).  But they will word their requests in such a way that it sounds like a demand.

Anonymous13
Anonymous13

@idiocracyisnow @jordanhanson You don't have to take the roadside preliminary breath test (PBT). If you refuse to take the evidentiary test at the station, you are charged with an additional charge of DWI Test Refusal (a gross misdemeanor) and your license is revoked for a minimum of 1 year.

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