Devils associate coach Andrew Brunette charged with DUI

Devils associate coach Andrew Brunette charged with DUI

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DEERFIELD BEACH, Fla. — Andrew Brunette, assistant coach for the New Jersey Devils and former head coach for the Florida Panthers, was arrested in south Florida early Wednesday morning as he was driving home from a bar in his golf cart, authorities said.

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The 49-year-old brunette was stopped just blocks from the ocean in the Deerfield Beach area north of Fort Lauderdale, according to an arrest report from the Broward Sheriff’s Office. He was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol and two counts of disobeying a stop or give way sign. Brunette was later released on Wednesday on $500 bail.

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The Devils said in a statement the team was aware of Brunette’s arrest and was gathering additional information.

According to the arrest report, a deputy was in the process of ticketing Brunette’s illegally parked golf cart around midnight when Brunette emerged from a nearby bar and told the deputy he was about to leave. The deputy said Brunette was unsteady on his feet and slurred his speech, and when his wife joined him, the deputy said he heard the wife tell Brunette not to drive while the deputy was there .


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The deputy remained in the area and reported seeing the couple drive away about 17 minutes later, the report said. The deputy said he saw the golf cart run through two stop signs before stopping Brunette on a residential street about a mile from his home. According to the report, during an on-site sobriety test, Brunette struggled to follow directions before finally quitting and asking for a lawyer. He also declined to take a breath test to measure his blood alcohol level, officials said.

Online jail and court records didn’t list an attorney for brunette.

Brunette is in his first season as the Devils’ assistant coach. He was interim coach of the Florida Panthers last season, having taken over when Joel Quenneville resigned over his connection to a Chicago Blackhawks abuse scandal in 2010.

The Panthers fired Brunette after losing in the second round of the playoffs last spring, even though he led them to the Presidents’ Trophy as the league’s top team in the regular season.

A native of Sudbury, Ontario, he played 1,159 NHL games for Washington, Nashville, Atlanta, Minnesota, Colorado and Chicago from 1995 to 2012. He was Wild’s assistant from 2015-2016 and served on the Florida staff from 2019-2022.

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