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Hope Solo arrested in Walmart parking lot on DWI, child abuse charges in North Carolina

The former U.S. national goalkeeper’s lawyer said the incident is “more sympathetic than the initial charges suggest.”
Hope Solo
Former U.S. national goalkeeper Hope Solo looks on during "Champion & Activist: An Evening With Hope Solo" at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on Jan. 27, 2020.Sam Wasson / Getty Images file
/ Source: NBC News

Former U.S. national goalkeeper Hope Solo was arrested in a North Carolina parking lot for alleged impaired driving while she was with her children, officials said Friday.

Winston-Salem police officers apprehended Solo, who also goes by her married name Stevens, on Thursday in a Walmart parking lot and booked her on suspicion of impaired driving, resisting arrest and misdemeanor child abuse, authorities said.

She was booked into a local jail and then released. 

“Ms. Stevens had her two children in the vehicle with her at the time of this offense,” according to a police statement. “Based on the impending prosecution, no further information will be released regarding this arrest.”

Solo, on her verified Instagram, posted a statement from attorney Rich Nichols who suggested there are mitigating circumstances in this arrest.

“On the advice of counsel, Hope can’t speak about this situation,” according to Nichols, “but she wants everyone to know that her kids are her life, that she was released immediately and is now at home with her family, that the story is more sympathetic than the initial charges suggest, and that she looks forward to her opportunity to defend these charges.”

Solo is one of the nation’s most decorated soccer players, having led Team USA to Olympic gold medals in 2012 and 2008 and the World Cup championship in 2015.

But her off-the-pitch behavior has drawn nearly as much attention as her stellar play between the sticks.

She was America’s starting keeper for the 2007 World Cup but was passed over for the starting lineup in the semifinal match against Brazil, in favor of veteran Briana Scurry. After Brazil’s 4-0 victory, Solo unloaded on then-coach Greg Ryan, leading to Solo’s banishment from the team prior to that tournament’s third-place game.

After Sweden knocked out the Americans in penalties during the quarterfinals of the 2016 Rio games, Solo blasted the Swedes as “a bunch of cowards” for allegedly playing a hyper-defensive game to force a shootout. That outburst led to a lengthy suspension by the nation’s governing soccer body.

This story first appeared on NBCNews.com.