Update: Richie Sambora arrested for DUI; Ava was a passenger

04/14/2008 at 07:55 PM ET

SamborafamilyUpdate: It has been learned that police have recommended that Richie be charged with child endangerment as a result of the arrest.  His tentative arraignment is set for May 7th.

Originally posted March 26th: Richie Sambora was arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) last night in Southern California and his 10 ½-year-old daughter Ava was a passenger in the vehicle, People has confirmed.   A law enforcement official tells the magazine that there were three females, one adult and two juveniles, traveling with Richie at the time of the 10:52 p.m. traffic stop. 

The 48-year-old guitarist for the music group Bon Jovi entered a residential treatment facility in 2007 for alcohol abuse.

Ava is Richie’s daughter with ex-wife Heather Locklear.  TMZ reports that Heather was called after Richie failed multiple field sobriety tests and she agreed to release her daughter to the adult female occupant of the car, identified by People as Richie’s girlfriend.  Richie and Heather parted ways in 2006 after 11 years of marriage; Their divorce was finalized last year.      

Sources:  TMZ, People


Share this story:

Your reaction:

Add A Comment

PEOPLE.com reserves the right to remove comments at their discretion.

Showing 0 comments

tink1217 on

wow, I never thought I would read something like this about Richie. Its sad. I know he was in rehab last year and his father passed away, along with the divorce and breakup with Denise Richards too. He had a rough year. Its too bad Ava had to be in the middle of this. I have always loved Bon Jovi, especially Richie. I met him at the Hard Rock Hotel in Hollywood, Fl a few years back and he was the nicest guy. Its just a shame. I hope he can get the help he needs.

Megan on

Wow, that is SO sad. How nice would that be to get a call at 11pm saying your daughters father was just arrested for DUI with her in the car? Hopefully Heather has a nice talk with her lawyers today.

Nikka on

I have no mercy as my sister was killed by DUI driver a couple years back. I hope he didn’t think the rules don’t apply to him 😦

They should be paid $10-20 per hour like the rest of us, then they will think twice if they want to buy expensive cars and waste money on booze.

sleekraven on

He didn’t really spend enough time in rehab, he should have stayed longer than he did. People don’t just pop in and out of rehabs for help, they need to stay and learn skills to help them. Rehab is not there for a “dry out”. Addiction needs to be kept in check and people still struggle even with the help of the skills they’ve learnt so when people go into rehab, they need to put their heart into it.

Amanda on

How sad 😦 I’m glad everyone is okay, I just don’t get why some people would endanger their children so much, what is a child doing awake driving in a car with a drunk parent at 11pm anyway?

kimy on

If the girlfriend was ok to drive, how come she wasn’t driving in the first place? I don’t understand how you could put your own child in danger like this. Even worse that she had a friend in the car.

Ivey on

Maybe this is the final wake up call for him, he is very fortunate that no one was hurt and hopefully he can see this as an opportunity to make sure it never happens again.

He seems like a sweet guy I just hope his judgment calls in the future are much, much better.

Sarah on

This is really sad, but what I do not understand is, why was he driving? If the other lady in the car was sober enough to drive Ava home afterward… why was she not driving in the 1st place? I hope this wake up call for all of them!

Renee on

Megan, I think that would cause more harm than good. I’m not excusing his actions by any means but Ava isn’t a little kid and she’s a daddy girl. If Heather threaten to not let Ava see her dad, this situation could get really bad for her. He obviously needs to stay in rehab and I’m sure he will do time in jail.

Anonymous on

I don’t understand WHY- with all the money they have- celebrities insist upon driving while drunk. Would it kill them to shell out the money for a cab? That his daughter was there too makes the situation so much worse. Unfortunately, (assuming he’s an alcoholic, and even if he’s not) good judgment is probably not his forte when he’s been drinking. Still, he should know better.

I know a woman who is an alcoholic and who has driven with her children in the car on several occasions. I wish for her kids’ sake that she’ll be pulled over and charged with a DUI before she harms her children or anyone else. 😦 I hope that Richie realizes how grave a mistake he’s made, and that he will seek the help he needs to get better.

Devon on

Not that I am condoning Richie’s actions, but has it crossed anyone’s mind that he and the female passenger thought he was ok to drive? Richie has always expressed how much he loves his daughter so I highly doubt that he intentionally put her in harms way. It doesn’t say what his blood alcohol content was, just that he over the limit. The limit is 0.08 and if he was 0.09, he would have been over. If the female passenger was allowed to drive Ava home, and wasn’t driving to begin with she probably thought Richie was ok.

That being said, I’m glad they are all ok.

Nikka on

I think it’s the guy’s ego, that they insist on driving stating they are fine and capable. My husband is the same, he won’t admit that he shouldn’t drive and its always a big struggle (i win) It’s the ego and I hate it.

brooke on

Last year there was a blind item, and everyone on other sites and boards said it was most likely richie and heather. It said which divorced couple who share one child, the mother is afraid for her child to be with the father a lot because of his bad drinking habits. I bet judging after this incident everybody was right, and it was about richie. One of the reasons heather left him besides cheating, was said to be because of his drinking. Denise too was said to have left him because of his drinking problem. Thank god ava is ok, and he didn’t hurt any other innocent people.

Alicia on

Wow, he needs to get help. Thinking about all the other people on the road and his little daughter in the car with him makes me ill. Someone could have been seriously hurt or killed. If I was Heather, I’d be irate. Thank God he was pulled over before anything happened.

Erin on

I am truly shocked – Richie is the last person I would have expected this from. I hope he gets the help he needs and is able to overcome his addictions. He has always seemed like a wonderful man and – especially – father so hopefully this has been a huge wake-up call for him!

Heather on

Thats so awful. Not just that Ava and another child were in the car, but the other adults and other people on the road he could have hurt. Heather must be furious. He really needs jail or rehab or something.

Ericka on

Nikka, I’m in the same boat at you. My sister was also killed by a drunk driver 15 months ago.

In one instant I’m 100% against drunk driving for the obvious reason(s) but at the same time I feel for him and his family and what he must be going through to get him too this.

I hope the crap he’s gone through and seeing that it’s not obviously just hurting him it is hurting his child emotionally and HAD the potential (thank god he got pulled over) too hurt himself, his daughter, his other passengers AND someone else on the road.

Ericka on


You have ONE drink you’re NOT okie to drive. I don’t think people understand that. Just because YOU think you’re okie to drive doesn’t mean you are.

The person that killed my sister thought he was okie too drive, and speed on top of that. He obviously wasn’t because he was OVER the legal limit and had drugs in his system…but it’s okie because HE thought he was okie to drive…

After ONE drink you’re impaired! You may feel fine and really it doesn’t feel like it has effected you but it has.

Tara on

Oh dear. I don’t think there’s any point in being negative- the last thing his daugher will need is to look back to see a massive media frenzy with strangers discussing the capability of her father as a parent. That said, clearly there needs to be repercussions. I hope he gets the help he needs.

Bethie on

A few years ago, my stepson’s mom was arrested for an outstanding warrant. My stepson happened to be with her in the car. The officer was nice enough to let her call someone to come and get him before he had to see his mom get arrested. I can only hope this happened the same way. Poor Ava!

andrea on

absolutely NO sympathy for anyone who chooses to get behind the wheel after indulging in alcohol (and other judgement impairing substances, legal or not). My neighbor lost her son to a drunk driver a few years ago- the grief from that tragic night will FOREVER be etched on her face.

It sounds harsh, but I think anyone who drives after drinking is being selfish. Just because they don’t want to deal with the inconvenience of staying put until the substance has left their body, or found another ride…instead they roll the dice and take a chance that something won’t happen- turning their normally harmless vehicle into a potential 2ton weapon. I wish people who even toy with the idea of “maybe i can handle it, i’m not that drunk…” could see the faces of families altered by drunk drivers. The pain is not worth it.

Before people jump all over me and say “how cold can you be? RS has obvious problems, etc”, I am not completely heartless to Sambora’s struggles…I come from a long line of alcoholism and addiction. It’s an evil beast, for sure. I honestly hope that he continues to seek help for his wellness and that of his family. Addiction is no way to live.

That said though, I hope he gets more than Hollywood justice.

sarah =] on

cant you just picture britney spears saying “now thats a bad parent”?

Principesa on

Driving a Hummer, driving drunk and driving drunk with passengers (one who happens to be the drunk driver’s child).

Ick three times over.

Ritchie: there are taxis in Laguna Beach.

Perhaps this is his bottom he needed to reach before ‘getting real’. He’s lucky he didn’t kill anyone.

Melanie F. on

I have not an ounce of sympathy for any drunk drivers, their families yes. Drunk driving is a choice, there are plenty of alcoholics and people who are just having drinks who choose not to drive after drinking.

It’s selfish as hell to get behind the wheel of a car knowing you have been drinking and taking the lives of innocent people into your hands because you were so selfish that you CHOSE to drive drunk. Of course every DUI driver thinks they are sober enough to drink and drive. My own step sister has 4 DUI’s and each time she thought she was okay enough to drive, I didn’t feel an ounce of sorrow for her either when she went to jail.

It may sound harsh but I can’t find any sympathy for someone who chooses to take the lives of innocent people in their own hands. If they weren’t considerate enough to take into consideration that other innocent peoples lives may be in danger because of their careless actions, then I don’t feel I should be considerate enough to spare their feelings on how their actions repulse me.

They need to take drunk drivers to fatality scenes caused by other drunk drivers and show them what their selfish actions can do to innocent families.

Colleen on

I’m a little, ok a lot, surprised that CBB posted this news blip. I realize that Ava was in the car, so she was involved, but I do not see the point in posting this news/gossip item on the CBB, which tries not to be a gossip column. I know that Ava being in the car is a fact, but if Ava herself were to be arrested for DWI- would you post that as well?
This article seems out of place and I’m disappointed at the CBB for posting it.

Missy’s note: Hi Colleen. I’m sorry to hear you are disappointed that I would choose to author a post about Richie’s DUI arrest. It seemed fairly clear to me why this would be a CBB-relevant story, but because it is in doubt I’ll explain my rationale.

Ava is a celebrity baby we routinely cover, who — if the allegations against Richie are proven true — saw her life endangered, by her celebrity father no less. If Ava was in an airplane that had to perform an emergency landing, wouldn’t we be expected to cover it? If her father was piloting the plane, wouldn’t it be even more CBB-relevant? I’m not sure why this situation is any different. And, as a side note, to answer your rhetorical question with regard to whether or not we’d cover Ava, if she herself was to receive a DWI, the answer is yes. We’ve covered the legal troubles of celebrity babies numerous times in the past, and no doubt will need to do so again in the future.

We’re certainly not seeking to exploit Richie’s problems; That much is evidenced by the fact that when news of his DUI broke earlier today we ignored the story entirely. Only when news of Ava’s involvement surfaced did we feel it warranted inclusion on CBB. And while a DUI might have gossip-y overtones it’s far from gossip; Richie’s DUI is a major news story being covered not only by the celebrity blogs but also by mainstream news outlets including MSNBC, CNN and ABC. We’d be doing our readers a disservice by ignoring it.

Again, my apologies if you feel the post is below the belt or inappropriate for CBB. I hope by explaining my rationale you have a better understanding of just why I felt compelled to write it.

Devon on

To say that if you have one drink means that you cannot drive is a little bit of an exaggeration don’t you think? If it weren’t, there would be zero tolerance laws. One drink does not lead to impairment, nor does one drink lead to someone being pulled over for a DUI.

Please do not assume that drunk driving has not affected my life, because it has. A very close family friend died while behind the wheel drunk, killing a passenger as well, not to mention leaving behind his 8 month pregnant wife and two small children. I feel for the countless lives that have been lost due to horrible decisions.

All my comment was trying to say was that we shouldn’t harp on the guy too harshly. He probably thought he was ok, his girlfriend probably thought he was ok (she obviously was sober since she drove Ava home, so I’m thinking she had no clue that he would be over), and no one was hurt. Shouldn’t that be worth more than calling him an idiot?

Marissa on

Wow, that poor kid. I just read a few weeks back that Heather was battling depression and her psychiatrist (I believe) called an ambulance because she thought she was a danger to herself. Now this. Sigh.

S.A.M on

My father was a chronic alcoholic for over 40 years, actually it’s what took his life in the end. BUT never once in my 27 yrs of life, do I remember him going behind the wheel drunk, in fact, he just quit driving all together, because he knew that he couldn’t stay sober long enough to drive safely.
So in other words, there is no excuse for DUI people. If a chronic alcoholic could be responsible person, I think its more a reflection of bad character, rather then alcoholism that’s the problem here.
However, with saying that, I believe everyone does deserves a 2nd chance. If he becomes a repeat offender though, that’s when we can judge him to be a complete selfish imbecile.

Starlet on

In my opinion it would be best if the rule was simply, you don’t have any alcohol and drive. So many people think they are safe. I have a friend who lost her child to a drunk driver, it is horrific that anyone would put themselves and especially their children or other people’s children at risk.
While I am very much for acting as adults in divorces and custody, this would definitely make me contact my lawyer to at least revise custody until I knew my child wouldn’t be put at risk!
Very sad, I hope he addresses this!

Nikka on

I would suggest to lower the limit to 0, that’s a good idea (as it’s not right now) Obviously I, who never drinks will react to one single glass different then a chronic alcoholic.

People unfortunately tend to think this cannot happen to them, and will only learn after they kill/hurt someone in DUI, Speeding, etc. Then they will say why did i do that, why did I not listen, but then it’s too late. Every day over and over again we see these. So why don’t they learn one day before it’s too late?

Judyb on

Devon: the problem with drinking is it impairs the persons judgement. A person with impaired judgement does not have the capability to make the decision whether they are OK to drive. IMO a person who has been drinking is never OK to drive.

I also do not understand why celebrities drink and drive. They can afford to hire a chauffeur or just take a taxi. There is absolutely no excuse for them to get behind the wheel.

Devon on

Judyb, I agree with you on not getting why celebrities don’t hire drivers. Personally, I hate driving in general and if I could afford it I would have a driver on call. Since I can’t, I live in the city where I can walk everywhere.

However, I do not agree that one or two drinks impairs you to the point where you shouldn’t drive. I know everyone is different and that two people drinking the same two drinks may have different reactions but all my original post was trying to say is that Richie most likely wasn’t trying to put his daughter into harms way and that we should all be thankful that she, Richie and all the other passengers are ok.

Sarah F. on

i hope he gets help. the only feasible reason i could see for heather releasing custody to the other woman in the car, is that she didn’t know richie was drunk? i have known functional alcoholics and i feel like they act more “normal” when they are drinking (of course, that said, they should NOT be driving, but maybe his girlfriend didn’t realize it is all)

Melanie on

While I am extremely sorry for your loss, I do have a small issue with your comment. Having ONE drink does NOT impair an average person from being able to drive. The legal limit is set at .08 because there have been tests upon tests done to set it. ONE drink does NOT give someone a blood alcohol content of .08…not even someone who rarely drinks. So while I understand that you’re upset (and rightfully so given your experience with this particular issue) it’s a little ludicrous to tell people they shouldn’t drive after ONE drink. As I said, the law is set that way for a reason.

With that being said, I agree that people should be well aware of what constitutes “not being able to drive properly”. However, it’s not realistic or logical to tell people they cannot drive after one drink.

Karen on

I was very shocked and saddened to see this post, but I am even more saddened after reading these comments. Why anybody would try and justify his actions is beyond me. He put people’s lives at risk, he broke the law, you can’t justify that. To say it’s not so bad because he must’ve thought he was ok to drive, is just ridicules. I don’t think many drunk drivers get behind the wheel think “oh man I am so drunk there is no way I am going to be able to drive home, oh well I will try anyways”. Usually drunk drivers get behind the wheel thinking that their drinking will not effect their driving. And if he was driving erratically enough for the police to pull him over then the women in the car should’ve known he wasn’t sober enough to drive.

Bex on

So sad. I love Richie. I hope he gets the help that he needs.

Ericka on

Thank you BUT….read below…

“It’s not a question of whether you are legally intoxicated, it’s a question of whether or not it is safe to drive when you have consumed ANY amount of alcohol. Research shows that impairment begins long before a person reaches the blood alcohol concentration level necessary to be guilty of drunken driving.

All it takes for most of us is one or two drinks and most people are impaired..maybe not sloppy drunk, but impaired to the point they should not drive. Just because you think you’re okie does not mean you’re okie. Your judgement is off. Ask MADD or any family member of someone lost too drunk driving “accident” if you’re impaired after one drink…most will say yes. It’s a risk..a very big risk. I saw this study a few years ago on the news where they had the vision of someone after ONE drink compared too someone who didn’t drink and it was DRAMATICALLY noticeable in how they drove. They may have no felt drunk but it did infact change they way they drove and reacted too certain driving conditions.

I remember a post in the Seattle Times (gonna find the link in a min) regarding the impairment after ONE drink and a study that was done.



Ericka on

Do a little research…it helps. MADD is a great website for information also but if you feel that’s not the correct website trying googling it.

This is a great animation…only 2 drinks

What constitutes impairment?
Impairment begins with one alcoholic drink – whether it be “hard” liquor, wine or beer. Once alcohol is consumed, it is absorbed by an individual’s blood system, and can be measured as Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC). Studies show that even one drink decreases one’s ability to react quickly, a factor that can prove fatal when an impaired individual gets behind the wheel of an automobile.


Anonima on

I have never commented before, but having a family member who is an alcoholic (drinks periodically) and who has never acknowledged that she has a problem, I can tell you that unless something radical happens (like a discovered DUI) it can take days before relatives and friends notice that the drinking has started again.

As someone said, many alcoholics are “functional” and very good at hiding that they are drinking. His girlfriend may not even have realised that he had been drinking before they got into the car, especially if they haven’t been dating for very long and she hasn’t seen him drunk.

Alcoholics are also usually very good in decieving themselves, as I said, my relative has never acknowledged that she has a drinking problem even though she has been to rehab. Everyone who works with addiction rehabilitation can tell you that the first step in dealing with an addiction is to realise that you are an addict. Before that step has been taken it is virtually impossible to break the addiction. And it is very difficult to force a person to realise that they have an addiction and that it is a problem they need to deal with (with the help of others), that is why so many people who have been forced to rehab come out and start drinking again.

That said, I am not defending DUI, it can never be justified, and I am not feeling sorry for Richie. But I just wanted to point out that alcoholism is a very complicated matter with no straight answers and no fool proof solutions, it is not just about responsibility (to the one whose father stopped driving all together because he realised he had a problem; I admire him, because it takes a lot for alcoholics to come to that realisation, even if he never managed to stop drinking), it is not just about willpower.

Many sober alcoholics struggle every day to keep sober and many of them do get relapses, especially in the beginning and after a long time of sobriety. A DUI can serve as a wake up call (and I hope it will in this and every other case), especially if it is a relapse, but as I said, addicts are really good at self deception no matter the evidence you put in front of them.

As a relative to an alcoholic I can tell you that what you feel is utter helplessness and desperation, because even though you can pour out the alcohol and hide the car keys and fight them when they want to drive, but you can’t lock them in, you can’t force them sober.

I am sorry about the essay, but when I read the comments it occurred to me that people don’t realise (or don’t want to realise) that there is a difference between going out drinking on occasion and not realising that You are too drunk to drive and to be an alcoholic driving under influence.

DUI is unacceptable in both cases, but in the first case a DUI (whatever the outcome) usually serves as a wakeup call and most people will never do it again, in the second case it might be a wake up call, but many will just continue to believe that they never drink to much, that the breathalyzers were faulty, that they weren’t that drunk, that they are exceptionally good drivers no matter what and they do not have a problem with alcohol.

I cannot speak for Richie Sambora or his family, but if is wife divorced him because of his drinking, then it seems to me as if he is an alcoholic, hopefully struggling (and able) to stay sober. It doesn’t make the DUI excusable, but it would explain why.

I any case, my thoughts go to his family and especially his daughter.

Starlet on

Devon, most people are surprised to learn that 2 drinks can put you over the limit. Alcohol is becoming stronger and glasses (inparticular wine glasses) are getting bigger. Many experts in the field agree that every drink alters your judgement.
I know most people in the field feel a policy of no drinking and driving would be better.
In england they stopped using the term drunk driving and started calling it drink driving. The point being that MOST people are simply drinking and wouldn’t consider themselves drunk when they sadly get behind the wheel, and yes, they are over the limit!

Karen, I agree with you, there is NO justification apart from I think the reality is many people sadly do this every day and try to make it seem “normal” and “OK”. When you’ve been at a child’s funeral and watched your friends go through hell because someone who “had a couple drinks” got behind the wheel and killed their child, to me, all justification goes out the window.

In our family the rule is simply, we are not celebrities and don’t have access to celebrity money, but if you drink you don’t drive, you budget for cabs, get the bus or stay on soft drinks!

Sheri on

First of all, to Nikka and Ericka, I’m so, so sorry to hear of your sisters’ tragic and fatal accidents! I can’t even imagine going through that.

I, too, think that Richie must not have realized how drunk he truly was as a lot of people can really hide it. All I can say is I’m sure Heather is LIVID beyond words. I know I would be if my child had been in the car with him driving drunk. God must have truly had His guardian angels around that car that night … thank God the kids are okay.

andrea on

“To say that if you have one drink means that you cannot drive is a little bit of an exaggeration don’t you think? If it weren’t, there would be zero tolerance laws. One drink does not lead to impairment, nor does one drink lead to someone being pulled over for a DUI.”

Devon, why take the chance though? Sure one drink may be fine for most, why even entertain the possibility? Alcohol does muddy the judgement of people- maybe one drink doesn’t affect it in a significant way (ie swerving, other dangerous behaviours behind the wheel, etc)..but it will slow the thought making process- not drastically, sure…but in that split second more that it takes to comprehend that the green light has gone red…is it really worth the possibility of accidentally colliding with another person, just because they weren’t at the legal limit of drunkenness?

And as for your other point…why should we even tolerate a person behind the wheel with alcohol in their system? Driving is a privilege, not a right. If someone wants to drive, they should be able to make the concession that they are doing it without a drink beforehand…or judgment altering medications in their system.

I hope that Mr Sambora works with the MADD organization in depth in the coming months. It’s a very profound experience learning about the consequences of drunken driving from these families. I also hope that he continues to work at getting his alcoholism in check- he’ll never be fully cured, but hopefully he can get to the point where that daily dance with the devil isn’t as powerful and gut wrenching as it currently is.

Beverley on

I recently read that Sean “P Diddy” Combs is starting up a company in the LA area that is basically a chauffeur company for celebrities who have had too much to drink. They call and get picked up and driven to wherever they need to go (basically just a fancy taxi system). Things like this episode with Richie and Ava is why it needs to be done and quickly. Although I don’t see why celebs can’t just call a taxi or a friend. I guess a regular taxi would be below them, but at least they would get home safely and without endangering others.

susan on

If you can afford a drink, you can afford a cab. I don’t care what excuse you think you have. No amount of rationale makes this right. If you drink, wait, get a cab or call a friend. I can’t even believe this is an argument. Err on the side of caution and you will get home alive. And so will the innocent people who play it fair and only drive when they are sober. Period.

Sanja on

Devon, and others who commented on this, I’d just like to say that there are countries that have 0,0 legal limit for driving, so there are not only individuals, but whole governments that believe that ONE drink makes you impaired for driving.

Harley on

I have to agree with everyone on here. Simple concept, you have money, hire a driver or a cab. Period. It’s not as if he couldn’t afford a limo to take them all home. For the love of Pete, that’s YOUR kids life you just endangered. You can bet your socks if that were my ex-husband I’d beat the holy smack out of him for doing that not only to my daughter but, to everyone in the car.

Lara on

There were a lot of articles last year about how some people naturally produce enough alcohol to have a BAC of .01. Breathalyzers have a margin of error of as much as .02. So Zero Tolerance would be a bad idea, because some people would have a BAC of .03 without ever taking a drink.

Michelle on

It is all very well arguing over what the legal limit is but the fact is if you know you are going to drive you do NOT drink alcohol!

That way you know that there is no risk – why cant people quite get that?

Loren on

totally agree with you Michelle, if you are going to drive no alcoholic beverages.
If you are going to drink; get a driver(cab, designated driver, take the bus). People have accidents while driving without alcohol, why take a chance driving having consumed any amount of alcohol? It is getting harder and harder to call out the kids on bad behavior when adults in high places are constantly out of order.

tink1217 on

I haven’t read everyone’s posts, but the majority sound pretty judgmental. While I do not ever agree with driving while intoxicated it just goes to show that everyone, including celebrities, makes mistakes. Everyone has a demon or two they have to deal with and Richie is no exception. He had an amazingly tough year or two with his divorce, his father passing away, and his break up with Denise. Everyone goes through hard times and Richie isn’t the first to pick up a drink and won’t be the last. Instead of condemning him and saying terrible things, why can’t people just hope he can view this as a wake up call and get the help he obviously needs. How about being happy that nobody was hurt. I admit to driving after having a couple drinks when I was younger. Although I never did it with my kids in the car. Richie made a huge mistake that could have cost lives. I think he probably knows that and personally I hope he will take this opportunity to get help and repair the lost trust he obviously will have with Heather.There is no excuse, no of course not…but if everyone who made a mistake was condemned because of it I doubt people would be brave enough to ask for help. Especially if they already feel ashamed. which I hope Richie does.

Ericka on

Beverley I’ve never heard of that before but there is a service here where I live (I’m not sure if it’s Country wide yet). It’s called normal people volunteer too pick people up at Bar’s & Clubs free of charge if they are drunk.

Also, if you choose to go out and drink with your friends and you’re the DD you’re treated a certain bars and clubs. More than 20 bars are taking part in the “Who’s Your DD” designated driver program. Servers and bartenders will now be asking groups who the designated driver is. That person will get free non-alcoholic beverages and free snacks.

There are ways around drinking and driving you just have too figure it out. If you don’t have money for a cab there’s free alternatives. Also, it seems like an inconvenience but maybe calling a parent at 2am and asking them too come get you would be a good idea. I’m sure they’d rather be tired at work than too lose their child for good.

SMC on

Looking at the number of comments on this board, I knew this thread would turn out this way.

I think we can all agree that Richie Sambora made a HUGE mistake by driving under the influence of alcohol, especially with children in his car. There is no excuse for that, and hopefully he feels the same way and is ready to get the help he needs.

As for driving under the influence in general? It’s a terrible thing that happens far too often. I have countless friends that have gotten DUI’s, the most recent being one of my bridesmaids who just got one on St. Patrick’s Day. I’ve lost a family member to a drunk driver and have seen other loved ones devastated by the same kind of tragedy.

I do not agree with instituting a zero tolerance policy, but that is just my own personal opinion. What happens when a mother takes some cough syrup and then gets arrested for a DUI when picking her kids up from school an hour later? I think people need to be more responsible and make better choices, even though that’s better said than done. But that’s just my opinion.

andrea on

When it comes to Richie’s actions, I freely admit that I am very judgmental. But when you have seen first hand the result of what can happen from these situations…

I mentioned in my first post that my neighbor lost her son to a drunk driver. Her face is forever frozen on that night- a once happy woman now has deep permanent creases all across her face. Upturned eyes now look downward. And even when she is not crying, the grief is palpable enough to see the unshed tears. And so long as I live, I will never forget the night that a police officer interrupted her peaceful slumber. The guttural wail that came from her is never far from my mind- I hear it everytime I am in a situation where there is drinking involved. That night sealed the deal for me…as strict and harsh as it may be, I simply will not allow myself to operate a vehicle if I’ve consumed anything that has the potential to cloud my judgement (even if it is something as benign as Tylenol…I just won’t do it). And after seeing that outcome up close, I don’t tolerate it in others.

If a person can’t be bothered to hand over the keys…call another ride…or god forbid, just sit tight, then I stand by my original belief that there is no other excuse except for selfishness. I understand Richie Sambora has issues. The hand dealt to him over the last couple of years would be enough to break anyone…but the potential outcome of this recent night necessitates more than just a simple “wake up call”. Yes, all the parties involved are incredibly lucky that nothing more transpired than a week’s worth of negative press. But to handle this with white gloves and hold back on the real sentiments that this stirs up…I don’t think he will reach his rock bottom until he hears the painful chorus of those affected by people like him. People like him NOT meaning derelicts, slobbering drunks with no remorse whatsoever…but instead, well intentioned people who simply had their moment to think of others but instead chose to run with their own wants. I think he should also meet with folks from the other side…family members of those who were behind the wheel while intoxicated. Obviously nothing will ever compare to losing a loved one to a drunk driver, but having their family member slapped with penalties and locked up for years on end is a loss nonetheless.

Ava is now old enough to be forming some ideas and thoughts that will set in for the rest of her life…I hope that the result of this week reinforces the belief that drinking and driving do not mix. I also hope that in being exposed to her father’s struggles with addiction, she really weighs the pros and cons when she finally turns of age and makes the decision whether or not to drink (or use other substances). She’s seen the ugly side of alcohol use- hopefully she remembers it and doesn’t view substance usage as alluring.

Her father unfortunately had to learn the hard way. As awful as this week (and presumably the recent years, in witnessing her dad’s behaviour while struggling) has been, I hope the silver lining is that she uses it as a gift and is never sucked in to the dark world that is addiction.

Kelley on

Tink, I rarely agree with anything you say but I agree 100% with your post about Richie.
I don’t condone what he did but I am not going to rake him over the coals either. Not the smartest choice driving after drinking but like someone else said maybe he thought he was okay to drive. My husband has driven with our kids in the car after a drink or two so does that make him a bad person? If drinking just one drink impaired your judgement it would be illegal to drive when you have had a drop. I am sure looking back he wishes he made a different choice and I am sure he feels awful. He’s not a star that you hear about all the time like these young “stars” in Hollywood.
I also doubt that Heather is livid. I am sure she’s not happy but I can’t see her doing anything legally about this. She has had her issues too and they both are committed to raising their child together.
Richie has had a rough year and I can only hope he uses this as a wake up call. I am sure you will see him working with some organization to try and make this right.

Silvermouse on

Geez, guys it’s a dui, I bet most people have driven under the influence by accident. . .it happens. Don’t automatically say that someone is bad. .. I might not have kids (I’m a college student) but some of my friends DUI. Sure I might not like it, but it’s not like people do it on purpose.
Richie is probably still a good father.

Jen on

There is never, ever, never a reason for a child to be in a car with a driver who has been drinking. If the parent wants to drink they should find a sitter or a designated driver for that night or totally abstain from it all together.. I am certainly not saying he is a bad person but wow…what extremely poor judgement he made because Heaven forbid if he had been in an accident (and I am saying “had”) then imagine the guilt on his shoulders.

Sarita on

I can’t believe how some people here are saying it is just a DUI. Everyone should know by now that driving after drinking is not ok, terrible accidents are caused by it, ruining people’s lives. Just because nothing happened this time doesn’t mean it was not so bad.
He is a grown man and should know better.

The amount of celebs that get DUI’s are just unbelievable, and they do it over and over again. How are these people raised?

Renee on

Sarita, maybe you are going a step too far. It doesn’t matter how a person is raised. If they have any kind of issue with addiction, there’s really not too much a family can do but be there for them and try to get them to get help. Also, not all celebs come from rich families.You shouldn’t judge all of them from a few select people. I’m also willing to say way more regular people have been arrested for dui than celebrities who represent a very ,very , very small portion of the population.No one is excusing his behaviour. Driving while under the influence is horrible, case closed.

Kim B on

I have 3 kids one Ava’s age and 2 younger ones and I would never think about getting into a car even if I only had one very diluted drink. Alcohol can effect any one. Sometimes it only takes one drink to effect the way you drive. When we go out to dinner and my husbands has one beer with dinner he still tells me to drive and he is 6.3 feet tall and is 200 pounds but thats just being a good dad and being responsible even though he might not be over the limit. I think that they should take Ava away from him for at least 6 months and maybe that would be awake up call to him or the next time could be worst. Most drunk people that get into accident are fine because their bodies are not tense they are relaxed and so their bodies can give a little but its those that are in that car or the other car that was hit that become hurt or even die. PEOPLE NEED TO THINK BEFORE THEY DRIVE!

Renee on

Kim, that may make things worse. Also, that’s between courts and Heather.Really, it’s a touchy subject when it comes to custody and none of us know any of these people personally. Also, I’m thinking none of us are experts on Richie’s personal battle with addiction

Ericka on

Silvermouse, it’s just a DUI?…

Are you serious??? Do you how how many lives he’s put in danger including his own, his child and the woman passanger?

Have you ever lost someone to a drunk driver? Maybe when you do (because if your so frilly about the issue you probably drink and drive yourself) or you hurt someone else and change their lives and their families lives FOREVER…NEVER to be the same again…NEVER to be normal again then maybe it won’t just be “JUST A DUI”.

I do not wish that on you or anyone you know…hopefully you learn before someone is seriously hurt or even killed by your rediculously STUPID and selfish actions.

Jennifer on

I have a comment for “Devon” (or anyone else for that matter)who feels it’s okay to drive after having one drink….I totally disagree with that. Some innocent people are losing lives over the poor choices people make, such as this.
I am 5’5 1/2″ tall, weigh 123 lbs. and when I have one cocktail (yes, just one)I feel it, because I rarely drink. I certainly wouldn’t get behind the wheel I know that.
It makes me sick when people try to rationalize that it’s ok to drink and drive, ever. It’s never okay to drink and drive and why can’t everyone figure that out. It’s as simple as that.
It’s not fair to the innocent people who are making the right choices to be put in harms way, by those of you who aren’t.
I’m just glad Richie’s daughter and anyone else in the car or out on the road that night are all ok…they were all very lucky in my eyes.

crysntrin on

people are assuming people who drink and drive, intentionally drive drunk. 9 out of 10 time, they get themselves into the situation accidently, because they are impaired. Alcholics don’t know their limits. A lot of them cant help themselves, because its truly a disease. Do you think the average person would really like to put their child in harms way? As a recovering alcholic, I am appalled at some of these comments. I agree you need to take responsibility for your actions. I gave up driving all together to protect my children, and I dont even drink anymore, but I cant risk it. But I do think people should acknowledge this is truly a disease, and most people who drive drunk, dont intentionally do it out of malice, or because they MAY get away with it. Before I had children, I thought nothing of driving from a bar or a party, because my body was so use to the alchol. It took being stopped with my first child for me to wake up. People need to realize, a lot of alchoholics have to go to extreme measures to keep themselves and their loved ones safe, and it is never easy.

Erica on

Nicely said crysntrin.

I sincerely hope that the courts decide not to charge Sambora with child endangerment. Apparently there’s a big disagreement between the law enforcers in that area over the decision. I would never think drinking drunk or even slightly intoxicated would be alright; but at the same time I don’t see what good it will do to take someone’s daughter away when they are by all means an otherwise excellent father. Yes, I agree that responsibility does not to be taken and there should be repercussions (suspension of license, heavy fines, probation). In this case I truly believe even Richie’s ex wife Heather wouldn’t think that barring him from their daughter would be a good thing for anyone involved. Sad situation regardless of what happens.

Aitch on

I strongly believe his actions ARE child endangerment. If he is not charged, maybe he will think it is OK to do it again. And what could be the tragic results next time? If you are over the legal limit with your child in the car, I think the law should be very severe with this. I am a Mother and I don’t even drink a half a beer and then drive with my children.

Sarita on

crysntrin; it is a choice to drink and get in a car and these people have to be held responsible and be punished otherwise they never learn. Making excuses for them is no solution. You stopped drinving drunk after you were stopped with your child. But before that you could have killed someone elses child, but apparanntly you didn’t care about that.

If you know you are going drinking, don’t go by car. Before you even have one drink you can already take the possibility of driving after drinking away.

sarah on

Rocker Richie Sambora could face criminal charges of child endangerment after being busted on a DUI charge. Cops in Laguna Beach, Calif., tell us they’re investigating whether there’s enough evidence to hold the Bon Jovi guitarist responsible for putting his 10-year-old daughter, Ava, and another child at risk.