Lance Armstrong admits careless driving in Colorado hit-and-run

Wed Feb 18, 2015 7:05pm EST
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By Keith Coffman

DENVER (Reuters) - Lance Armstrong has pleaded guilty to careless driving for side-swiping two parked cars in the Colorado ski resort of Aspen late last year in an incident for which his girlfriend initially took the blame, authorities said on Wednesday.

The 43-year-old disgraced professional cyclist avoided a court appearance by paying $238.50 in fines and court costs by mail last week, according to the Pitkin County clerk's office.

Armstrong was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles and banned for life from racing in 2012 after a U.S. Anti-Doping investigation. He later admitted in a television interview using performance-enhancing drugs during his championship run.

This week arbitrators ordered Armstrong to pay $10 million to a sports insurance company for bonuses he reaped from his tainted victories, calling the case "an unparalleled pageant of international perjury, fraud and conspiracy."

In the Aspen incident, Armstrong was initially cited for leaving the scene of an accident and driving too fast for the icy road conditions when he crashed into the cars in the upscale ski resort one night in late December.

According to police reports, a resident who heard the crash said that when he came outside to investigate, a woman, later identified as Armstrong's longtime girlfriend Anna Hansen, approached him.

Hansen apologized for the accident, the resident told police, said she would pay for the damages, and left the scene.

When investigators went to the Aspen home the couple shared they found a vehicle registered to Armstrong with "significant damage."   Continued...

Lance Armstrong, founder of the LIVESTRONG foundation, takes part in a special session regarding cancer in the developing world during the Clinton Global Initiative in New York September 22, 2010.  REUTERS/Lucas Jackson