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'Ally McBeal' will finish season without Downey

Robert
Downey was arrested early Tuesday after a police officer found him in an alley  

LOS ANGELES, California (CNN) -- Actor Robert Downey Jr. was arrested early Tuesday and booked for investigation of being under the influence of a controlled substance, a Culver City police spokesman told CNN.

Shortly after the news broke, the producers of "Ally McBeal," the hit television series for which Downey had recently won a Golden Globe award and Screen Actors Guild trophy for his role on the show, announced they would finish the season without him.

"Robert is a unique talent and a very special person, and we wish him the best and hope for a full recovery," said David E. Kelley, the producer of "Ally McBeal." "We are wrapping up the stories on the final few episodes of 'Ally McBeal' for the season without him."

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Robert Downey Jr.'s Aprril 24, 2001 Arrest, Booking, and Incident Report
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A spokesman for the actor said Downey checked himself into a Los Angeles-area rehabilitation facility hours after the arrest. He will be there for 72 hours.

"Robert Downey Jr. checked himself into a rehabilitation hospital because this is something he realizes he needed to do," said Downey attorney Daniel Brookman. "He's getting immediate help. He remains committed to eventually beating this."

The state of California apparently wants to help him. A spokeswoman said Tuesday the State Department of Corrections will send the actor to a live-in drug treatment center for at least six months after he's released from the Los Angeles-area detox center.

"Just set aside Downey's celebrity. The reality is there are just so many beds available in the California Department of Corrections," said state prison spokeswoman Terry Thornton. "It doesn't make sense for us to send someone like Downey to prison. The ultimate goal is to help him overcome his addiction."

Thornton said Downey would also face increased drug testing.

Lt. Dave Tankenson said Downey was arrested after an officer on routine patrol noticed someone alone in an alley in Culver City, a Los Angeles area suburb, shortly after midnight Tuesday and stopped to question the person. The officer did not recognize Downey at the time, but noticed that he appeared to be under the influence of a stimulant, Tankenson said.

The actor was taken to the police station, where he gave a urine sample. No drugs were found on Downey, Tankenson said, and he did not admit to having used any.

Downey was let go on a citation to appear in court May 4 and released to the custody of his parole agent, Tankenson said.

Preliminary results for the drug tests will be known in a few days.

The arrest is the latest in a string of drug-related problems for the actor.

He is to appear in court April 30 for a preliminary hearing relating to his arrest Thanksgiving weekend at a luxury hotel in the desert resort of Palm Springs, California, for felony possession of cocaine, Valium and a misdemeanor count of being under the influence of a controlled substance.

Downey, 36, could be sentenced to four years and eight months in state prison if convicted on all three counts. He is free on $15,000 bond.

He entered a plea of not guilty to those drug charges in January.

He was released from state prison in August after serving time for violating his probation on other drug-related offenses.



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