D.C. United star Wayne Rooney arrested at Dulles airport for public intoxication
D.C. United star Wayne Rooney was arrested last month at Washington Dulles Airport and charged with public swearing/intoxication.
According to Loudoun County (Virginia) General District Court documents, the misdemeanor resulted in a $25 fine and $91 in fees. A Jan. 24 court date was waived.
Loudoun County sheriff's office spokesman Kraig Troxell said Sunday that Rooney was booked into the Loudoun County Adult Detention Center on Dec. 16, charged with public intoxication stemming from an arrest by Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Police (MWAA). He was later released on a personal recognizance bond.
The MWAA records office could not be reached Sunday.
"We are aware of news reports indicating that Wayne Rooney was arrested in December," D.C. United said in a statement. "We understand the media's interest in this matter but believe this is a private matter for Wayne that D.C. United will handle internally."
The team had no further comment. Rooney's London-based agent, Paul Stretford, did not respond to a message seeking comment and Rooney was not available for an interview. It's unclear whether MLS or United will discipline him.
WJLA-7's Erin Hawksworth was first to report the arrest.
According to one person close to the situation, Rooney arrived at Dulles from Saudi Arabia after consuming three mixed drinks and a sleeping pill. He was detained when customs officers noticed eye redness and signs of being impaired, the source added.
Rooney was transferred to the facility operated by Loudoun County, the jurisdiction where the airport is located. A United staff member, the source said, picked him up a few hours later.
Rooney then joined his wife and four sons for a previously scheduled flight to his native England for the holidays. In the United States, the family has a home in Bethesda, Maryland.
This marked Rooney's second brush with the law in the past 16 months. In September 2017, he was given a two-year driving ban in England after pleading guilty to being almost three times over the alcohol limit. He was also given 120 hours of community service. He apologized, calling it a "terrible mistake."
Rooney's latest arrest tainted an otherwise sterling first year in Washington. The former Manchester United and English national team forward revived the struggling local organization through his goal-scoring exploits and fierce work ethic. Stuck in last place in the Eastern Conference most of the year, United climbed the standings with a 10-game unbeaten streak and qualified for the playoffs.
Rooney's presence also boosted interest in the team, which for years has operated in the shadows of the Washington Redskins, Nationals, Capitals and Wizards. United saw increases in attendance at its new stadium, Audi Field, and an uptick in merchandising sales.
Rooney is the highest-paid player in United's history with a base salary of about $2.8 million, according to the MLS Players Association. He also collects substantially more through image rights, bonuses and sponsorship deals.
His contract runs through the 2020 season, with an option year in 2021.
United will open training camp in two weeks and begin the season March 3 against Atlanta United at Audi Field.
This article was written by Steven Goff, a reporter for The Washington Post.