You might recall that Jonas Valanciunas, on a cold April night, was charged with drunk driving.  The short of it was that he went to a local drive-thru, had empties in the back, which caught the eye of the drive-thru attendant, who informed the cops, who showed up at his house and arrested Valanciunas.  It’s almost like a nursery rhyme if you say it a few times fast.

The “crown” (if you’re American it means the government), has now decided that there’s no hard evidence here to convict Valanciunas and that that lawyer money is best spent elsewhere, perhaps funding a subway line or something.  Young Jonas should consider himself lucky that this has gone away because and hire himself a driver right away. This sort of thing sticks on your record like a dead fly, not that he’ll ever need to apply for a job only to get rejected because of this but still, yeah…something.

He had apologized at the time:

“I apologize to the organization, my teammates, my family and my fans, and regret any negativity this incident has brought upon them.”

To make further amends, he followed it up with a monster performance against Philly (reaction post) after which he had apologized again:

  • Andrey


  • turtlefin

    hopefully this isnt a case of a famous athlete getting off easy compared to a regular citizen who would face the full wrath of punishment. smh

    • DDayLewis

      There’s a good chance it is. MLSE has reach.

      • Garrett Hinchey

        That said, their evidence did seem pretty spotty at the time. How can you arrest someone for DUI after they’ve already parked?

        • DDayLewis

          True. If I recall correctly, they thought he was drunk, then the police found beer bottles in his car or something? That’s not a very solid case.

          More disappointingly, I feel like if this were a Leafs player in Jonas’ situation, it wouldn’t even have been allowed to make it into the news cycle.

        • Heyjoe

          You can still be arrested after you’ve parked, but it relies entirely on credible witness testimony and depends alot on how long you’ve been parked for. To provide a comparison, if someone assaulted another person then ran away they would not be immediately innocent because they are no longer at the scene of the crime. It’s a whole lot easier to fight a charge like this though, were you are arrested for DUI but are no longer in care/control of the vehicle.

          The thing is, people jumped to conclusions when he was arrested. The claim was that he had empties in his car. For the cop to be legally allowed to search his car, he would have had to arrest Jonas first or have his permission to search it. I’m fairly certain that the 2 breath tests taken at the police station also require that the suspect be arrested as well.

          My speculation is that Jonas did have empties in his car, but wasn’t drunk. Thus the only thing he could be charged with is the empties. Not only would that be pretty hard to prove in court because the cop didn’t catch him while he was driving, it’s also kind of silly to charge him with that especially if he was sober. If Jonas removed the empties prior to the cop searching his car, the case would rest mostly on the testimony of whoever the drive thru worker was. If he was sober, the drive thru worker testifying that he/she saw some empties in his car is probably not going to lead to a conviction.

    • Microaggressive

      Those of us with experience know that the cops have full discretion to lay charges. No need to panic because the situation seemed like the police had no real evidence to disclose. Without any hard evidence the Crown will withdraw the charges.

      The only surprise is how quickly the crown came to its decision. My guess is that Valanciunas’ lawyers demanded disclosure and the police were not forthcoming with any real evidence.

      • RapthoseLeafs

        My guess … is that someone actually put some cognitive thought into this, and realized what a waste of time and money it was. A fresh out of school paralegal would have won this case.

    • MoPeteRules

      But at the same time, the arrest was a little questionable. This is what a CBC article detailed on the night of his arrest:

      A drive thru employee spotted empty beer bottles in his vehicle, then called the police. By the time police arrived, he was already home. But police tracked down his car by scoping out driveways and searching for a car that fit the description given by the fast food employee. Then, upon finding a match, they found him in the home and subsequently administered a breathalyzer. At this point, he had been at home for an unknown period of time (undoubtedly he was crushing beers to wash down his delicious fast food). So his blood alcohol level was determined not during his drive, but after he was at home for an unknown period of time after returning home from his fast food trip. That’s likely why the case was dropped with such ease, since the protocol wasn’t really on point here.

      • RapthoseLeafs

        Yes … It was a totally stupid charge.

        I can’t believe they filed the charge in the first place. Total waste of taxpayer’s money. HE WAS IN HIS HOUSE when they arrested him (following a breathalyzer test). Not the f*@king car. If they had followed him to his house, that’s a different story.

        How does this not register as “groundless” charge. Waste of our time – mine included.

        End of rant. lol

  • Microaggressive

    Now he needs to apply to have his record of arrest expunged. In about 6 months from now.

    • Trini

      Wow you’re really on top of this huh?

      • Microaggressive

        If you have ever had a vindictive Ex you just might have had to deal with a criminal harassment charge that has no basis in fact. The police require no evidence to lay a charge, just a claim of fear by the complainant. Luckily for me I saved the texts in question, printed them out and gave them to the Crown. Result, charge withdrawn.

        Now I have even a conversation recorder on my Android phone.

    • RapthoseLeafs

      Good luck with that. Not long ago, one of the Canadian newspapers did an article on how this messes up people’s lives. No conviction, but still get hassled. At what point does “wipe off the record” not resonate.

  • JunkYardDog

    Well this seemed pretty obvious from the start. They did not catch him in the act, they really had no evidence whatsoever. Convicting Jonas of this would begin a very slippery slope. What’s next , the cops show up at your doorstep and say someone saw your car speeding ? This was a stupid arrest to begin with , should have never happened.

  • c_bcm

    Great news! Regardless of whether they had a case or not Jonas got himself into an unfortunate situation here. Move on, and focus up on ball. Expecting big things from him next year.

  • Pong


  • afrocarter

    Sweet, now this can become the non-story it was always destined to be..!

  • Pingback: Charges Against Toronto Raptors Center Jonas Valanciunas Dropped | Arrest Nation()

  • hotshot

    In response James Johnson gave his famous stink face and said “pfff dat is nothin'”

  • noname

    James Johnson be like “It’s ok youngblood, I’ll teach you the way. You’ll get ’em next time…”

  • mike, prague

    Does this make all those perfect gifs pointles? Darn.