Griffin pleads guilty to inattentive driving in accident

Updated: December 4, 2006, 6:03 PM ET
Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS -- Minnesota Timberwolves forward Eddie Griffin pleaded guilty Monday to a petty misdemeanor for inattentive driving in connection with a March traffic accident.

Eddie Griffin

The 24-year-old Griffin paid a fine and court fees totaling $375, said Mary Ellen Heng, an assistant city attorney. A misdemeanor charge for driving without a license was dropped after Griffin produced a valid Texas license and proof of insurance.

Heng said Griffin entered the plea through his attorney and did not appear in court.

Griffin, who has battled alcohol problems for years, hit a parked car early on March 30 in Minneapolis. Witnesses said Griffin then went into a convenience store and told employees he was drunk.

Rather than give Griffin a breathalyzer test, two police officers gave him a ride home -- an incident that prompted an internal police investigation.

The owner of the vehicle Griffin hit has filed a lawsuit seeking damages.

Griffin is averaging just 2.0 points and 2.3 rebounds a game this season and has played a total of seven minutes in the last three games for the Timberwolves.

Once thought of as an important piece in a thin Wolves frontcourt, Griffin has seen his playing time dwindle as a result of the surprising emergence of second-round draft pick Craig Smith.

Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press