It always seemed like Jeanine Pirro couldn’t get out of the faded New York state town of Elmira fast enough. But on Sunday it seems she was in a rush to get there.
The former district attorney, whose show “Justice with Judge Jeanine” is a staple of the Fox News channel, was ticketed by a state trooper Sunday for driving 119 mph in the Southern Tier town of Nichols.
Pirro, 66, was pulled over at 1:15 p.m. on Route 17, said a spokeswoman for the state police. The speed limit there is 65 mph.
Nichols is about 25 miles from Elmira, where Pirro grew up.
Pirro got on the line when a reporter called a relative’s home in Elmira on Monday afternoon, but she hung up when asked about the ticket.
Later, Fox News issued a statement on her behalf.
“I had been driving for hours to visit my ailing 89-year-old mom and didn’t realize how fast I was driving,” she said. “I believe in the rule of law and I will pay the consequences.”
Pirro has until Jan. 8 to answer the ticket in person or by mail. According to the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles, a conviction for driving 40 or more miles over the speed limit results in 11 points on a driver’s license. Eleven points in an 18-month period is grounds for a license suspension.
After a stint as a judge in Westchester County, just north of New York City, the former prosecutor became district attorney in 1994. She served three terms, then opted not to run for a fourth in 2005 so she could challenge Hillary Clinton in the race for U.S. Senate the following year.
That contest got off to a shaky start when Pirro lost a page of her speech and stood silent in front of the microphones for more than 30 seconds. She gave up the race months later, opting instead to run for New York attorney general. She lost the election to now-Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
Earlier, her then-husband, Albert J. Pirro, was sentenced to 29 months in prison for tax evasion. During the 2000 trial, The New York Times reported, the couple’s luxury car collection was described for the jury. It included Bentleys, several Mercedes, several more sport utility vehicles and a Ferrari 348 Spider that cost more than $120,000.
Pirro put her Westchester home up for sale for just under $5 million in 2015. It is still on the market, listed for $3.7 million.
SOURCE: USA Today – Jonathan Bandler