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Fox 13 anchor Russell Rhodes faces additional charges after Channelside police scuffle

TAMPA — Russell Rhodes, the WTVT-Ch. 13 anchor with the bruised and bloody face in his mug shot, is now accused of driving under the influence and resisting an officer without violence.

The Hillsborough State Attorney's Office filed the additional misdemeanor charges Wednesday, Assistant State Attorney Douglas Covington said.

Rhodes, 49, already faced a charge of obstructing an officer without violence.

Prosecutors and sheriff's officials would not provide details Thursday about the level of Rhodes' intoxication.

Rhodes, who lives in Tampa, was arrested Jan. 16 after an off-duty deputy stopped him in the public parking garage at Channelside on suspicion that he was driving under the influence. According to the deputy, the morning news anchor tried to walk away twice after being ordered to stay put and surrender his car keys. When Rhodes tried to run out of the garage, the deputy took him to the ground.

Rhodes entered a written plea of not guilty Wednesday at his arraignment on the obstruction charge. He did not appear in court.

He could not be reached Thursday for comment.

Officials at WTVT will not say when or whether Rhodes might return to on-air duties.

"FOX 13 is aware of this new development and is continuing to review the matter," the station's Web site said.

Times staff writer Eric Deggans contributed to this story.

Fox 13 anchor Russell Rhodes faces additional charges after Channelside police scuffle 02/05/09 [Last modified: Friday, February 6, 2009 8:40am]
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