D'IBERVILLE -- Todd Harrell of 3 Doors Down is free on a cash bond of $1,789 and has a March 24 plea hearing on his second DUI arrest in D'Iberville.
The charge from his arrest Tuesday night alleges Harrell was impaired by a substance other than alcohol when he was found slumped over the wheel of a borrowed vehicle.
Harrell had a valid Tennessee driver's license, police Capt. Clay Jones said.
Harrell also is free on a $100,000 bond in Nashville, where he has been indicted on multiple felonies including vehicular homicide by intoxication. He is accused of driving impaired by prescription drugs in April, when he was involved in a crash resulting in another driver's death. His arraignment in that case is Feb. 28.
Harrell, 42, is a founding member and bassist for the hit rock band, formed in Escatawpa in 1996. The band's hits include "Here Without You" and "Kryptonite." He was unable to
accompany the band on its world tour after his arrest in Nashville.
His first DUI arrest in D'Iberville was July 19, 2012, after his Cadillac rear-ended a pickup. His trial was postponed several times. He was arrested in Nashville before his D'Iberville case went to trial in August. He was convicted of the DUI and lost his appeal in a bench trial in county court Jan. 8.
"How can he still be driving?" said Jane Thibodeaux, who contacted the Sun Herald. Her husband is the one Harrell rear-ended in 2012.
"If he had been tried quicker in D'Iberville, that poor man's family in Nashville might still have him," Thibodeaux said. "I have compassion, but if you can't learn from your mistakes, I have no sympathy for you. It makes my blood boil because somebody else could be hurt or killed."
The new arrest
Harrell was arrested Tuesday after a caller reported a man was slumped over the wheel of a sport-utility vehicle at 7:01 p.m. Harrell was in a family member's SUV at Lamey Bridge Road and Central Avenue and was visibly impaired, Jones said.
Police called Judge Albert Fountain for a court order to draw Harrell's blood for a toxicology test, Jones said, and the judge set a cash bond of $1,789.
Unlike felony bonds, which are set by a judge on a case-by-case basis, misdemeanor bonds are preset by the charging court. Fountain ordered Harrell's bond be paid in full before his release, instead of allowing him to pay only 10 percent of the bond amount.
The amount of his bond is the maximum amount allowed for a DUI second-offense charge. It includes a $1,000 bond plus $500 for state assessments.
Bonds are a form of insurance and are not designed to penalize. Bonds are set to ensure a defendant appears in court until a case is resolved.
Police have released no details on the substance believed to have caused Harrell's alleged impairment.
Harrell was released to someone else, with a summons to appear in court. A friend or family member retrieved his vehicle, Jones said.
The manner of Harrell's release is not uncommon. For instance, former world heavyweight wrestling champ Jack Swagger, whose legal name is Donald Jacob Hager, was arrested and released in the same fashion in Gulfport in 2013. Swagger was convicted of speeding, driving under the influence of marijuana and possession of marijuana.
The first DUI
Both of Harrell's DUI arrests in D'Iberville are misdemeanors.
The 2012 arrest occurred at a four-way stop at Lemoyne Boulevard and Gorenflo Road.
Darryl Thibodeaux later testified he saw in his rear-view mirror a Cadillac approaching and knew he was going to take a hard hit. He suffered minor neck and back injuries.
A police officer testified Harrell passed out in the back of a patrol car while the officer was interviewing a witness.
A toxicology test showed Harrell had several drugs in his system, including oxycodone, Percocet, Flexeril and Xanax.
Harrell lost his appeal on the DUI conviction Jan. 8. A sentencing order signed by Judge Robin Midcalf on Jan. 23 requires Harrell to register for substance-abuse and victim-impact classes within 30 days of the order. The order was filed Jan. 27.
In the lower courts, judges typically sign final judgments after prosecutors write the orders.
The order also requires Harrell to complete the classes within 90 days and to show the court proof. State law allows Harrell to lose his license for only three months if he completes the classes.
The judge fined him $1,000 and suspended $250, gave him a suspended two-day jail term and placed him on probation for six months.
City attorney Fred "Dub" Hornsby said a motion to revoke Harrell's suspended jail time is pending.
"He is not in contempt (for class enrollment) until the time allotted for enrollment has run," Hornsby said. "A contempt order is always available when a court order is violated."
He declined to say if the 30-day enrollment period began Jan. 23 or Jan. 27.
In Mississippi, drivers' licenses aren't revoked on suspicion of DUI unless a driver is arrested on a DUI refusal charge. Otherwise, license suspension is handled by the state Department of Motor Vehicles after it is notified of a defendant's DUI conviction.
Because Harrell has a Tennessee license, any efforts to suspend his license could take longer. Most states have reciprocal agreements to suspend a license for a DUI in another state.
If convicted on the second DUI in Mississippi, Harrell faces five days to a year in jail, a fine of $600 to $1,500 and a loss of license for up to two years.
The homicide arrest
Online court documents in Nashville allege Harrell admitted drinking at least two or three bottles of hard cider before the April 18 fatal crash and said he had taken Lortab and Xanax.
Court papers show his blood was drawn by a court order after he refused a blood test and a plastic bag containing three types of prescription drugs was found in his right sock when he was taken to jail. The pills included 24 doses of oxycodone with no proof of a prescription, records show.
Testimony at his preliminary hearing revealed a toxicology test showed the presence of prescription drugs in his system after his arrest, according to the Associated Press.