Nils Lofgren Suspects Bruce Springsteen's DWI Arrest Was 'A Vendetta'
By Andrew Magnotta @AndrewMagnotta
April 12, 2021
News of the arrest didn't reach the press until February — days after Springsteen appeared in a Jeep advertisement on Super Bowl Sunday. The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer was vindicated a few weeks later when the charges were dismissed.
E Street Band guitarist Nils Lofgren is skeptical of the ordeal, given how soon it occurred following the contentious 2020 Election.
"My gut tells me it was a set-up and a vendetta, maybe by a police officer who has maybe a different political point of view," Lofgren told Asbury Park Press in a recent interview. "Bruce was under the legal limit anyway, and it seems like that all finally came out and he got let off."
Springsteen was pulled over at the Gateway National Recreation Area in Sandy Hook, NJ, on November 14, 2020. He had reportedly just taken a drink and posed for photos with some fans when an officer saw him get back on his motorcycle and ride away.
Springsteen was reportedly cooperative with police and took a Breathalyzer test where his blood-alcohol content (BAC) was measured at 0.02, a quarter of New Jersey's 0.08 legal limit. He was arrested anyway and charged with driving while intoxicated, reckless driving and consuming alcohol in a closed area.
"All I can think of is that it was a vendetta and that's just an opinion," Lofgren added. "I'm sorry it happened and glad he got through it fine."
Because the incident occurred on federal land, Springsteen answered the charges before a federal judge. The judge dismissed the DWi and reckless driving charges, while Springsteen pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor of consuming alcohol in a closed area.
He was fined $540.
In his ruling, Magistrate Judge Anthony Mautone noted Springsteen's legal BAC at the time of his arrest and that the musician had only three driving violations on his record in the last 48 years.
Photo: Getty Images