BREAKING: Rascal Flatts’ Joe Don Rooney Pleads Guilty To DUI Charge, His Sentenced Revealed

Rascal Flatts Joe Don Rooney; Photo by Andrew Wendowski
Rascal Flatts Joe Don Rooney; Photo by Andrew Wendowski

Joe Don Rooney, the former lead guitarist for Rascal Flatts, pleaded guilty to his 2021 DUI charge on Wednesday (June 2) in Williamson County, Tennessee.

According to The Tennessean, the country superstar was sentenced to 11 months and 29 days in prison, however, only has to serve two days behind bars as the other were suspended. 

The hitmaker’s suspended sentence requires him to report to prison on Wednesday, June 8 by 3 PM CT. 

Rascal Flatts; Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images
Rascal Flatts; Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images

Following his two-day imprisonment, Rooney will also be required to complete a DUI training.

Rooney’s driver’s license was also revoked as part of his sentence. The Kansas native will be able to apply for a restricted driver’s license, which would require him to own a vehicle with a built-in breathalyzer installed.

Joe Don Rooney of Rascal Flatts; Photo by Andrew Wendowski
Joe Don Rooney of Rascal Flatts; Photo by Andrew Wendowski

The outlet also reported that the 45-year-old guitarist pleaded “guilty to a first-time DUI offense, a Class A misdemeanor.” The crime carries up to 11 months and 29 days of jail time, according to The Tennessean. 

On September 9, 2021, at approximately 4 AM local time, Rooney was arrested and charged with driving under the influence after he reportedly crashed his car into a tree. 

Joe Don Rooney and Jay DeMarcus of Rascal Flatts; Photo by Andrew Wendowski
Joe Don Rooney and Jay DeMarcus of Rascal Flatts; Photo by Andrew Wendowski

An affidavit, obtained by TMZ, later revealed that Rooney blamed the incident on a deer crossing the road. Police, however, said that Rooney smelled of alcohol and later admitted that he had “one more” drink than he should have.   

Following his arrest, Rooney bonded out with a bond set at $2,500. 

Weeks after Rooney’s arrest, fellow Rascal Flatts band member, Gary LeVox, opened up about Rascal Flatts and revealed that he was unhappy with the trio’s demise. 

“I’ve never been okay with the way that it ended,” LeVox confessed to People. “I was never okay with…” the singer added, before pausing to think what to say next. He then revealed, “I wasn’t happy that Joe Don [Rooney] quit.”

LeVox went on to reveal that Rooney’s departure was completely unexpected. 

“It kind of came out of nowhere,” LeVox continued, referencing Rooney’s exit. “It was like, ‘Let me try to wrap my head around this.’ And then I certainly wasn’t okay with the pandemic, which canceled everything. I hate the way that it ended. I hate that we didn’t get to do this farewell tour. I can’t stand the fact that it just feels there’s no closure with something that we’ve been so blessed with. That will always be in my heart.”

At the time, LeVox admitted he had not spoken to Rooney since his arrest.

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