Bauhaus lead singer Peter Murphy was sentenced Thursday to three years of probation and must complete 45 days of Narcotics Anonymous meetings for rear-ending a car in Glendale and fleeing in his vehicle until he was stopped six miles away.
Murphy, who is best known as the lead vocalist in the British Goth rock band Bauhaus, pleaded no contest in Los Angeles County Superior Court to misdemeanor hit-and-run driving for the March 16 crash, and guilty to a charge of possessing methamphetamine.
Police reportedly found methamphetamine inside the patrol car in which Murphy was detained.
Murphy had previously pleaded not guilty to three charges. His plea change came after a deal with prosecutors, who agreed to drop a misdemeanor charge of driving under the influence of drugs.
Murphy deferred any comments to his attorney, Robert Wilson, who said his client was “very happy” and “thrilled” with the plea deal.
“It's the correct resolution,” Wilson said.
Murphy's guilty plea to the meth charge could be dropped and completely removed from his criminal record if he successfully completes 45 days of Narcotics Anonymous meetings. He also agreed to three random drug tests.
“It would be as if it never took place,” Judge Frederick Rotenberg said to Murphy.
Rotenberg ordered Murphy, who lives in Turkey, to return to court on May 8 to prove he completed the program.
“There [are] lots of ways to avoid county jail,” Rotenberg said. “You get to decide the best way to do that.”
Murphy must also complete 10 days of community service for the hit-and-run charge.
He was driving his manager's Subaru Forester when he crashed into another car and fled onto the Ventura (134) Freeway.
“He just panicked and he ran,” Murphy's attorney said. “It's just the way it is.”
The driver of a pick-up truck saw the crash and followed Murphy to the 3400 block of Barham Boulevard in Los Angeles, where he blocked him until Glendale police arrived. Police said the rocker appeared confused and had difficulty recalling the day and time.
Murphy's blood alcohol level was .01, his attorney said, adding that there was no evidence that his client was using drugs or alcohol.
Police said they later found small a plastic bag containing methamphetamine inside the patrol car where Murphy was handcuffed and sitting, police said.
Murphy's attorney said he doesn't know if the drugs belonged to his client or if they were inside the patrol car before he was detained.
Murphy is expected to perform in five shows next week in California as part of his “Mr. Moonlight” tour and in celebration of the band's 35th anniversary.