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          Front Page




Country Singer Accused of DWI

By Martin Salazar
Journal Staff Writer
    Country music singer Lynn Anderson has once again found herself in trouble with the law— this time in Española, where she was arrested Wednesday, accused of driving drunk and rear-ending another vehicle.
    No one was injured in the incident, which occurred shortly before 7 p.m. near the Dreamcatcher theater, Española Police Chief Richard Guillen said. He said Anderson was arrested on suspicion of careless driving and aggravated driving under the influence.
    "According to the arresting officer, she was extremely cooperative and very polite, but refused a breath test," the chief said.
    Anderson— perhaps best known for her 1970s hit "Rose Garden," for which she won a Grammy— was taken to the Española booking and transportation facility, the former jail, Wednesday evening.
    This is Anderson's second drunken driving arrest in 18 months. In late 2004, she was arrested in Denton, Texas, and charged with drunken driving after authorities found her passed out in a car on the shoulder of Interstate 35W. She was eventually convicted on that charge.
    Then in January 2005, she was arrested in Taos after she was accused of shoplifting a $25 "Harry Potter" DVD at Smith's Food & Drug Center and then punched a police officer outside the store.
    She was initially charged with shoplifting, resisting a police officer and battery upon a peace officer, but the battery charge was subsequently dropped.
    Anderson's Taos case was assigned to the pre-prosecution diversion program. Less serious cases are referred to the program, in which a defendant enters into a written contract, has to abide by certain conditions and signs a written admission of the facts as charged.
    The court then issues an order suspending prosecution, and upon completion, the case is dismissed as long as the defendant doesn't reoffend, according to the Taos District Attorney's Office.
    The state courts Web site states that Anderson's case was suspended in July for up to 24 months. It's unclear what impact the Española arrest will have on the Taos case.
    Anderson, 58, has resided in Taos for several years. She was one of the featured performers during Albuquerque's Tricentennial celebration last month.