George Michael’s Driving And Legal Difficulties: A History

The singer's latest driving-related arrest caps off years of erratic behavior behind the wheel.

In his latest headline-making turn behind the wheel, pop singer George Michael was arrested on Sunday in London on suspicion of being unfit to drive. Michael was taken to a London police station after cops received reports that a car had smashed into a building. While the weekend crash recalls a scene from, say, “The Dukes of Hazzard” or “Cops,” the collision was just another mark on Michael’s growing list of rowdy (and often drug-related) automotive incidents.

Michael shot to fame in the 1980s as a member of the Brit pop duo Wham! and later found solo success with hits like “Faith,” “I Want Your Sex” and “Father Figure.” After getting arrested in a Beverly Hills restroom and being charged with “engaging in a lewd act” in 1998 — a move that sparked massive media attention and eventually led the singer to both acknowledge his sexuality and spoof the incident in the video for his single “Outside” — Michael has lit up headlines in recent years more for his erratic behavior than for his hit-making prowess.

2006 – Authorities arrested Michael after the star was found slumped over in a car and blocking traffic in central London . The singer was detained on suspicion of possessing Class C drugs (Class C drugs include a range of substances, such as marijuana and painkillers) and then released on bail. Michael was involved in a similar incident just a few months later. Once again, the star was found knocked out in a vehicle and then crashed into a traffic divider when a fellow driver woke him.

2007 – Michael was barred from driving for two years after crashing into three parked vehicles and failing to notify the owners of the cars before driving away.

2008 – Even on foot, the star continued to run into trouble. The singer was arrested on drug-possession charges after an attendant caught Michael in a public restroom in London (a seemingly favored haunt for the troubled singer) with a “small amount” of marijuana and crack cocaine. Luckily for the star, Michael was not charged and was sent along with a cautionary warning.

2009 – In what appears to be an annual trend for the singer, Michael was arrested again after he crashed his Land Rover into a truck. The star was questioned and then released and later denied being inebriated in a statement: “Neither of us [the truck driver nor Michael] was charged because we were both stone cold sober.” The star added, “I don’t want my fans or my family worried by what they are reading all over again.”