"30 Rock" Star Busted For DUI

Rip Torn is accused of DUI in Salisbury. He said ground was not level enough, police say

Sunday, Apr 19, 2009  |  Updated 6:05 PM EDT
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Actor Rip Torn, 75, is seen in this New York State Police photo taken Monday, Dec. 4, 2006 in Somers, N.Y., after his arrest for driving while intoxicated. Torn refused a sobriety test Monday after a collision in North Salem, N.Y., in which no one was hurt. (AP Photo/New York State Police)

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Actor Rip Torn, one of the stars of  "30 Rock," was busted for driving under the influence in Connecticut but says but says he's not guilty.

Torn -- who plays Alec Baldwin’s boss, Don Geiss, on Tina Fey’s hit show “30 Rock” – was stopped by a state trooper on Dec. 14 on Route 44 in Salisbury, Conn. shortly after he had left the White Hart Inn.

He was driving in the breakdown lane in his 1994 Subaru with a Christmas tree tied to the top, police said. He failed part of a field sobriety exam, then gave up after saying the ground was not level enough, state police said.

He also refused to take a Breathalyzer test and used profanity while in the trooper's cruiser, police said.

The arrest comes two years after Torn, whose name is Elmore Torn, was fined and lost his license for similar charges in New York.

Harrington attorney A. Thomas Waterfall is representing Torn.

"All I can tell you is that we will review the reports, and Mr. Torn and I will meet to discuss his defense options. At this point, I don't know what they are yet," Waterfall told The Register Citizen newspaper.

Despite previous drunken driving arrests in New York, Torn might qualify for Connecticut's alcohol education program. The program is for first-time offenders and could lead to the charges being dropped after a period of probation. He is set to return to court Jan. 28.

Torn was one of seven actors nominated for an Emmy last year for their guest performances on "30 Rock." The award went to Tim Conway.

He has had big hits with the "Men in Black" movies and won an Emmy for his role as the producer on "The Larry Sanders Show."

In April 2007, Torn agreed to pay a $380 fine and give up his license for 90 days after pleading guilty to driving while impaired in North Salem Town Court in New York State. See the report on the Smoking Gun.

In a Manhattan case in 2004, Torn was acquitted when jurors said the prosecution failed to prove he was drinking before a fender-bender with a taxi in Greenwich Village. The case created a buzz because of a videotape that showed Torn cursing at officers before turning down a sobriety test.

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