Butte’s Rob O’Neill, famous SEAL, arrested for DUI


Ex-Navy SEAL Rob O’Neill was arrested in Butte on Friday, charged with DUI.

Butte native Rob O’Neill,best known as the member of the Navy SEAL Team Six credited with shooting Osama bin Laden, was arrested for driving under the influence at 2:30 a.m. Friday in Butte.

He was found asleep at the wheel of a 2005 Nissan at the Town Pump, 531 S. Montana St. The car was running, police said.

O’Neill failed a portion of the field sobriety maneuvers administered at the scene, and he failed the rest of the test at the detention center, police said.

O’Neill was in Butte to attend a birthday celebration at the Butte Depot, a local bar. O’Neill turns 40 on Saturday, according to John Emeigh, a reporter for the Montana Standard.

Officers were called to the scene at 2:29 am, and they arrived one minute later. Two officers processed O’Neill, while two others interviewed the clerk inside the convenience store.

A Town Pump employee called police, reporting that five or six people had entered the store and reported that a man was asleep at the wheel outside. Witnesses said the man’s vehicle was running, police reported.

Officers arriving at the scene confirmed what the witnesses had reported. They also noted that the vehicle’s brake lights were on. They approached the car and opened the door, waking O’Neill, who stepped out of the vehicle.

Police administered the part of the field sobriety maneuver test that ascertains a subject’s ability to track with his eyes. O’Neill failed that test, and he failed the rest of the test at the county jail.

O’Neill refused to take a breath test and he was booked for DUI refusal, police said. O’Neill also appeared to be confused at the scene, officers said, at one point telling them he’d had taken an Ambien, but later saying he hadn’t taken the sleep aid. He also said he had had one drink, but then said that he had not had any, Undersheriff George Skuletich told reporters.

Whether O’Neill was under the influence of a sleep aid or alcohol, “He was obviously unable to operate a vehicle,” Skuletich said.

O’Neill told police he was tired and had flown in from overseas the previous day. Skuletich said O’Neill told police he had come in from South America, but also told them that he had flown in from Europe.

O’Neill was released after posting a bond and was ordered to appear later in city court. His license was revoked, but he was issued a 72-hour driving permit, Skuletich said.

Butte-Silver Bow Sheriff Ed Lester said in a statement sent by text, “I have great respect for Rob O’Neill and what he has done for our country. That being said, this incident was handled the same way as any other DUI investigation. Mr. O’Neill has the same presumption of innocence as any other citizen. We will let the county attorney and the court proceed from this point.”

If he is convicted, this will be Oneill ‘s first DUI. He lives in Dallas, Texas. He is scheduled to speak at Montana State University’s Strand Union Building at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, according to a press release.

This article originally appeared on ButteNews.net and is reprinted with permission.

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