Top ITV star Ant McPartlin has been charged with drink driving following a three-car smash on Sunday.
Ant McPartlin has become one of ITV’s best-known personalities.
McPartlin, host of high rating series such as Britain’s Got Talent, I’m A Celebrity and Saturday Night Takeaway, has been charged with drink driving this afternoon (March 21st). The Metropolitan Police confirmed the 42-year-old had been charged following their ongoing investigation into a car crash on Sunday, in which McPartlin was arrested at the scene after failing a roadside breathalyser test. Today, following a police interview under caution, he was charged with the driving offence at Kingston Police Station.
The ITV regular will appear at Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court on the 4th of April. It has already been announced that he won’t be part of any ITV programming for the foreseeable future with Saturday Night Takeaway pulled from its live broadcast this weekend. Co-host Declan Donnelly will anchor the remaining two episodes solo in the weeks following.
In a statement, ITV said they would not be putting the live show out, which is broadcast from their Southbank Studios in London.
Saturday Night Takeaway, a modern take on the beeb’s old Noel’s House Party, fronted by Noel Edmonds, has been an ITV hit for fifteen series.
In a statement on behalf of McPartlin and his co-host Declan Donnelly, they said on Monday:
“Ant has decided to go back into treatment and step down from his current TV commitments. He has spoken with Dec and ITV today and asked for time off for the foreseeable future. As such ‘Saturday Night Takeaway’ will not be going ahead this Saturday.”
Showbiz pals have spoken out in support of the star, who found fame as a teenager on the BBC’s Byker Grove children’s drama, along with many viewers of the Ant and Dec programmes. However, drink drive victims and campaigners have been unimpressed with support for anyone who takes to driving while drunk. ITV personality Piers Morgan noted on Good Morning Britain in the wake of the news ‘This Ant McPartlin was not the guy I know. Even if you really like Ant, he could have killed people.’
It is noted by Drink Driving.org that between 1979 and 2014 an average of 940 people were killed in a drink driving related accidents in Great Britain each year while an average of 3,681 people were seriously injured. The organisation also notes approximately 85,000 people are convicted of drink driving every year.
Declan Donnelly will host Saturday Night Takeaway solo on March 31st and April 7th.
The car incident as reported by Sky News at the start of the week (Monday 19th) noted that ‘TV star Ant McPartlin has been arrested on suspicion of drink-driving after a crash in southwest London.’ the news channel stated that the presenter, singer and actor was involved in a collision with two other vehicles while at the wheel of his mini.
The incident is reported to have happened just before 4pm in Richmond on Sunday. ‘A child passenger in one of the cars also a mini was taken to hospital as a precaution. She is believed to be a three-year-old girl.’ Sky News added. Other casualties from the alleged drink-drive incident were treated at the scene for minor injuries.
It is also reported his mother had been in the car at the time of the incident. BBC News note that McPartlin could face up to six months in prison, a fine and a driving ban of a year, if found guilty.