Veteran US Diplomat Faces Hit-and-Run Charge

Veteran US Diplomat Faces Hit-and-Run Charge

Former US ambassador to Iraq and Afghanistan Ryan Crocker is facing charges of drunk driving and hit-and-run after causing an accident while intoxicated, police said.

Crocker, who left his Afghanistan job early this summer for health reasons, was cited after colliding with a semi truck at a traffic intersection in Spokane Valley, in the northwestern US state of Washington, on August 14.

After driving on for some miles, the 63-year-old ex-diplomat stopped, and was eventually arrested by two troopers, who took him to a station where he was breathalyzed and found to be over the limit for alcohol, he said.

He could not confirm local media reports that Crocker pleaded not guilty to the charges of driving under the influence (DUI) and hit-and-run. A State Department spokesman did not immediately comment.

US authorities confirmed in May that Crocker, who was appointed out of retirement in July 2011 for a two-year term, would leave his post early this summer.

The veteran diplomat previously served as the US envoy to Iraq, Pakistan and Syria.