Singer Randy Travis charged with drunken driving in crash

DALLAS Fri Jan 11, 2013 2:47pm EST

Country Singer Randy Travis is pictured in this booking photo supplied by Grayson County Texas Sheriff's office. REUTERS/Grayson County Texas Sheriff's office/Handout

Country Singer Randy Travis is pictured in this booking photo supplied by Grayson County Texas Sheriff's office.

Credit: Reuters/Grayson County Texas Sheriff's office/Handout

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DALLAS (Reuters) - Grammy-winning country music singer Randy Travis had a blood alcohol level nearly twice the state's legal limit when he was arrested last summer after a Texas state trooper found him lying naked on a road after crashing his car, authorities said.

Travis, 53, was charged on Wednesday with driving while intoxicated for the August 7 incident near his hometown of Tioga, about 60 miles north of Dallas, in which he also threatened to shoot and kill state troopers while he was being transported to jail, Grayson County prosecutors said.

Travis had a blood alcohol level of more than 0.15 percent, or nearly twice the legal limit of 0.08 in Texas, authorities said in the statement issued on Thursday.

The misdemeanor charge carries up to two years in jail and a $4,000 fine if he is convicted.

Travis has not been charged for the threats to troopers, which remain under investigation and could be considered retaliation, a third-degree felony, the statement said.

Prosecutors and lawyers representing Travis have been actively negotiating a resolution, Grayson County District Attorney Joe Brown said in the statement, apparently hinting at a possible plea deal.

"The filing of this charge allows us to get the case into court, in order to finalize the case as soon as we can," Brown said, noting that it took some time to complete blood alcohol tests needed by the state and defense attorneys.

In addition to winning multiple Grammy awards, Travis also has appeared in movies and television shows.

The August crash and drunken driving charge is the latest in a series of law enforcement incidents involving Travis, who is known for "Forever and Ever, Amen" and other songs.

Travis pleaded not guilty in December to assaulting a man in a church parking lot in the Dallas suburb of Plano last August. Police said Travis intervened in a dispute between a woman he was with and her estranged husband. The misdemeanor charge carries a maximum $500 fine. Trial is set for March 11.

He was also arrested last February on suspicion of drunken driving while sitting in his car in the parking lot of another North Texas church.

(Editing by David Bailey and Will Dunham)

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