Ex-Miss USA Appears in Court on DUI Charge

Rima Fakih was first Arab-American to win title, in 2010

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Rima Fakih was the first Arab-American Miss USA.

    Former Miss USA Rima Fakih appeared in a Detroit-area courtroom in connection with her Dec. 3 DUI charge.

    Fakih, 26, declined to answer reporters' questions, saying "I apologize. My lawyer doesn't want me to talk."

    Defense lawyer W. Otis Culpepper said he will prepare for a trial, but aknowledged that a plea bargain is possible.

    "Of course she's remorseful," Culpepper said. "She's a model for young women. ... She's a woman of substantial character."

    The Michigan beauty, who in 2010 became the first-ever Arab-American Miss USA, was well over the legal limit and carrying a half-empty bottle of champagne when she was charged with driving drunk over the weekend.

    Fakih, of Michigan, was arrested in the town of Highland Park. Her blood-alcohol level was .20 according to a breathalyzer test. The Lebanese-born beauty was pulled over early Saturday going 60 mph in her 2011 Jaguar, weaving in heavy traffic and changing lanes without signaling.

    Police said they found an open and half-empty bottle of Moet & Chandon champagne on the floorboard behind the driver's seat.

    "I swear, I didn't know it was open," Fakih told Kalis, according to the report.

    Fakih initially tweeted a denial.

    "Let's clear things up now. ... I'm NOT in Michigan and I'm NOT in jail! Wrong Fakih," she tweeted Saturday.

    But on Sunday her attorney Doraid Elder confirmed the arrest. He said his client is "very saddened and very apologetic for the situation that she's in right now."

    After winning the title in 2010, Fakih competed for Miss Universe later that year but lost.

    Police offered no details of the arrest. On Sunday, Fakih tweeted: "A long run always gets me energized! Its time to make football Sunday food."

    The 26-year-old raised eyebrows shortly after winning her crown when a radio station produced photos of her pole dancing in shorts. She was born in Lebanon and is Muslim. Fakih, who has appeared on various WWE productions and at times has said she aspires to be a pro wrestler, starred opposite Hugh Jackman in the recent film, "Real Steel."