Marshawn Lynch pleads guilty to reckless driving, ends DUI case, don't expect suspension

Ronald Martinez

Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch ended his DUI case with a plea bargain. We break down the details, and what it means as the 49ers have their own legal issue with Aldon Smith.

Plenty of 49ers fans have been wondering about the Marshawn Lynch DUI case, and it appears there has finally been a resolution. ESPN is reporting that Lynch has pled guilty to reckless driving, which ends the DUI case. Lynch will receive two years of probation, a fine, and have to attend six classes on driving safety and alcohol consumption.

People have been asking whether or not this means Lynch will be suspended. All indications are that he will not face a suspension from the NFL. As I understand it, this issue falls under the league's drug and alcohol policy. His previous run-in with the law was a misdemeanor gun charge. He was arrested for having a concealed firearm in a vehicle (a gun in his backpack in the trunk). The gun charge falls under the personal conduct policy, which is separate from the alcohol and drug policy. In this case, he can't be dinged twice for the DUI in terms of an alcohol violation AND a personal conduct violation.

This kind of news often devolves into a discussion about the problems of another franchise. However, I think we've reached a point in the NFL where no fan base can claim some kind of moral superiority over any other fan base. I know that fans will try to talk about one team's crimes being worse than their own, but personally I see that as just splitting hairs.

The 49ers will have to deal with their own court case to deal with in the coming weeks. Aldon Smith has a March 13 court date. The last hearing in January combined his weapons and DUI charges. Smith was not in attendance for that hearing as the 49ers were preparing for the NFC Championship Game. I cannot find specific details on what this next hearing will entail, although I suppose it could be for his initial plea. I still think the two sides will negotiate some kind of plea bargain, but we'll have to wait and see.

All that being said, when it comes to the legal issues surrounding the Seahawks or 49ers, try not to cast too many stones.

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