Arrest clouds '24' future


Kiefer Sutherland's Tuesday morning arrest is not expected to affect production on his Fox drama series "24" for now, but the show faces an uncertain future as the actor's arrest violates a five-year probation, something that might send him to jail for up to a year.

The show's Emmy-winning star and executive producer was arrested early Tuesday on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol after having attended a Fox party kicking off the network's fall season.

Sources said Sutherland drove straight from the set of "24" to the party, which took place at hotspot Area, and was offered a company limo service but declined.

Sutherland, who was on probation from a similar 2004 conviction, was stopped by police just after 1 a.m. after making an illegal U-turn in West Hollywood just a few blocks from Area, authorities said. After failing a field sobriety test, he spent three hours in jail before posting $25,000 bail and being released a little before 6 a.m.

Sutherland's overnight jail stay didn't interfere with his duties on "24." The series is in production on its seventh season, but the actor was not scheduled to work Tuesday. He is scheduled to go back to work Wednesday.

Sutherland tested over the state's legal blood alcohol limit of 0.08% and is scheduled to appear in court Oct. 16, police said. As of Tuesday afternoon, the city attorney's office had not received the police report or filed charges.

A rep for Sutherland said that "it would be premature to comment at this time."

A misdemeanor DUI count would carry a maximum sentence of a year in jail, though Sutherland also could face a charge of violating probation. In November 2004, Sutherland pleaded no contest to one misdemeanor count of driving under the influence and is serving a 60-month probation. Before that, he had a 1993 conviction for alcohol-related reckless driving.

It is not clear how a possible jail time would affect production of "24," which is in the first year of a two-season pickup.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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