Amanda Bynes, 28, was reportedly arrested Sunday night on suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI). The former child star was pulled over by a California Highway Patrol Officer after reportedly stopping in the middle of an intersection in a Los Angeles neighborhood around 4 am Sunday morning. After failing a series of sobriety tests, it was determined that Bynes was under the influence of some sort of drug and she was booked on DUI charges.
This is not the first time Amanda, who was reportedly released after posting a $15,000 bond, has been arrested. Last year, she was arrested in New York after allegedly rolling a joint in the lobby of her West Midtown apartment, then throwing a bong out of her 36th floor unit. The case was dismissed once she reportedly completed the court-ordered requirement to attend substance abuse counseling twice a week. She was also arrested in 2012 for allegedly driving under the influence, after reportedly ramming into a Los Angeles County sheriff’s car. She pleaded no contest to alcohol-related reckless driving and was sentenced to probation, which she is still on. It is unclear how Sunday’s DUI arrest will affect the status of her probation, if at all.
Bynes also had a run-in with police last summer, this time in a Los Angeles suburb, after reportedly starting a fire in someone else’s driveway. It is not known why she started the fire, but apparently, her pants also accidentally caught fire and so she took them off. She was then seen on surveillance footage, without pants, walking into a liquor store with her gasoline-drenched dog and reportedly asked to use the bathroom to wash him off. Concerned witnesses called the police but the owner of the property did not press charges.
Despite her two DUI arrests (including the one on Sunday) and one drug-related one, sources close to Bynes have long said that substance abuse is not the real problem for the troubled star, it is severe mental illness, most notably schizophrenia, which she was reportedly diagnosed with last year, though Bynes denies this. One source, who claims that schizophrenia has been afflicting Bynes since her teens, said that at one point, she reportedly became so paranoid that there were tracking devices implanted inside the smoke detectors at the home of her parents house that she placed sheets over them.
Indeed, last year Bynes seemed to dominate the headlines more for her bizarre antics than her drug or alcohol-related arrests, including several strange tweets from her Twitter account. Last year, a verified Twitter account believed to belong to Amanda posted a series of bizarre tweets. In one tweet, the troubled star demanded a million dollars for “illegally” having her mind read. It is unclear who or what she was accusing of reading her mind or how she thought anyone or anything was able to read her mind, but it left many in doubt of her sanity.
Bynes also displayed increasingly bizarre behavior when out and about, some of which was captured by the media and some of which was reported by insiders close to her. When the paparazzi tried to film her, she would cover her face. She also started sporting various but distinct wigs, which she was photographed and filmed wearing around town, only to later deny the pictures or videos were of her. When filmed or photographed, she was always alone. Sources close to Bynes also claim that, while living in New York, she spray-painted her apartment windows black because she was terrified she was being watched and believed that the paparazzi had implanted a small spy chip into her necklace. Another source claims that Bynes hears voices. A post made on another Twitter account believed to belong to Bynes lends credibility to that claim, which reads: “The voices in my head are driving me crazy.”
Upon hearing of her arrest and subsequent DUI on Sunday, insiders close to Bynes expressed concern that she is no longer taking the medication required to treat her psychiatric issues, if, indeed, she has any. Short of obtaining her confidential psychiatric records, there is no way to officially confirm whether or not she has been diagnosed with any sort of mental illness. Friends also say that Bynes has recently been smoking a lot of weed, which is sometimes known to exacerbate the symptoms of schizophrenia. Bynes has yet to comment on Sunday’s arrest.
By Lindsey Dow