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Former Mets acting GM Zack Scott found not guilty in drunk-driving case

Former Mets acting GM Zack Scott was found

Former Mets acting GM Zack Scott was found not quilty of DWI. Credit: Jim McIsaac

WHITE PLAINS — Former Mets acting general manager Zack Scott was found not guilty on Thursday of criminal charges in a drunk-driving case.

White Plains City Court Judge Eric Press said there was no indisputable evidence that Scott was intoxicated when he was arrested in his stopped car at 4:17 a.m. on Aug. 31 at a traffic light in White Plains.

Citing police body cam footage, Press said he concluded "no neutral observer would conclude that [Scott] was drunk."

Scott’s attorney had contended Scott was looking down at his cell phone — not sleeping, as police alleged — when he was arrested hours after attending an event at owner Steve Cohen’s Connecticut mansion.

Press found Scott not guilty of driving while intoxicated (DWI) and the lesser charge of driving while ability impaired by alcohol (DWAI).

If convicted of DWI, the punishment would have been up to a year in jail, a fine of $500 to $1,000 and a license revocation for at least six months.

Instead, the judge found Scott liable for two traffic tickets, one for "stopping/standing/parking on highway" and another for "disobeying a traffic control device."

The tickets carried fines and surcharges totaling $376, which Scott paid immediately outside the courtroom. Scott declined to comment but released a statement.

"I am thankful for today’s verdict," the statement said. "Nonetheless, I regret choices I made on August 31, resulting in circumstances that led to my arrest.

"Thank you to my attorneys, friends, professional associates, and most importantly, my family for supporting me throughout this process.

"Professionally, I’m grateful to Sandy Alderson for the opportunity to lead baseball operations for the Mets and wish my former teammates nothing but the best going forward.

"I believe this humbling experience will make me a better husband, father, son, friend, and leader, and I look forward to what the future holds."

Scott was in line to become the Mets’ permanent GM at the time of his arrest. The team put him on paid administrative leave when he pleaded not guilty, fired him in early November and hired Billy Eppler a couple of weeks later.

A Mets spokesman said the team had no comment on Thursday’s verdict.

Scott’s lawyer, Bruce Bendish, said after the verdict: "Obviously, he was employed at the time and he was let go from that position . . . From everything I’ve been told, he has a good reputation in the baseball community and he’s well-respected, so I’m very confident that after hearing this verdict he’ll be able to start again his career."

On Nov. 9, Alderson, the Mets’ team president, explained the decision to fire Scott by saying, "Just the general uncertainty around the situation that he faced, and not knowing how that uncertainty would be resolved in December. I think we felt that it was just best for us and potentially for him, as well, that we made that decision. I’ve talked to him, wished him well. He’s a good man."

Scott had requested a non-jury trial. The verdict was originally supposed to be revealed on Dec. 16 but was postponed because Scott contracted COVID-19.

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