<
>

Griffin pleads guilty to inattentive driving in accident

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

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.