KEITH Richards, lead guitarist for the Rolling Stones, has been promised a pardon for an old traffic offence — courtesy of a fan, Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee.
Richards was fined US$162,20 for reckless driving in 1975 af
ter being stopped in tiny Fordyce, 113 km south of Little Rock, between shows in Memphis and Dallas.
His car swerved when he tried to adjust the radio, Richards explained, but police said they smelled marijuana and took him and three others to jail. All were freed after a Stones lawyer posted bond, and Richards paid the fine by mail.
Huckabee, who plays bass guitar in an amateur band, said he talked to Richards backstage at a Rolling Stones concert on March 9. He said he suggested the rocker apply for a pardon after Richards joked about his past. The governor even assisted with the necessary form.
“I realised that his impression of our state was marred by a misdemeanour traffic stop,” Huckabee said. “I wanted to clear his record in Arkansas as a goodwill gesture.”
Asked whether there might be objections from Arkansas voters, Huckabee deadpanned: “Not from anybody with an IQ above plant life.” He noted that none in Richards’ party was found in possession of, or under the influence of, drugs or alcohol. — Reuter.