Wambach pleads guilty to DUI, enters diversion program

Reuters News
Posted: Apr 13, 2016 1:49 AM

(Reuters) - Retired U.S. women's soccer star Abby pleaded guilty to driving under the influence of intoxicants on Tuesday, agreeing to enter a diversion program that could see her conviction wiped out in a year.

Wambach, who helped lead the U.S. women's team to the 2015 World Cup title and retired as the world's leading international goal-scorer, was arrested late Saturday night in Portland.

Police said Wambach, 35, had run a red light in her 2014 Range Rover and was taken to Multnomah County Jail on charges of driving under the influence after failing a field sobriety test. She was later released on her own recognizance.

Appearing before a judge in Multnomah County Circuit Court on Tuesday, Wambach, who retired from soccer in October, was ordered to undergo drug and alcohol assessment and treatment, put a breath-analyzing device in her car, and to abstain from drinking alcohol.

Wambach had apologized on her Facebook page a day after her April 2 arrest.

A former Olympic, professional and World Cup player, Wambach scored more goals in international competition than any other soccer player in history -- male or female -- before her October 2015 retirement.

She scored 184 goals in 252 matches in international play.

Wambach, a vocal supporter of women's sports, led the U.S. team in scoring in every world championship she played until the Women's World Cup in July 2015.

Having played in four women's World Cup tournaments, Wambach also played in two Olympics, winning goal medals in 2004 in Athens, and 2012 in London. She missed the 2008 Olympics with a broken leg.

(Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; editing by Sudipto Ganguly)