Hairston’s latest ticket was in friend’s car
Driving a friend’s car nearly 30 mph over the speed limit in Rowan County on Sunday caused P.J. Hairston to be suspended from the North Carolina basketball team.
The fact that the gray 2008 Acura TL belonged to 21-year-old Randi Lee Furr and was not rented by Durham resident Haydn “Fats” Thomas may be the lone bit of good news for Hairston in his latest legal mishap.
Hairston, UNC’s leading scorer this past season, faces charges of speeding and careless and reckless driving after an N.C. Highway Patrol trooper stopped him on Interstate 85 near Salisbury at 4:15 p.m. on Sunday.
According to the traffic citation, the 20-year-old Hairston was observed weaving in and out of heavy traffic on the freeway while traveling southbound at a high rate of speed. He was issued a citation for driving 93 mph in a 65 mph zone.
The citation showed the car carried vanity license plates that read ‘MISSRLEE’. N.C. Department of Motor Vehicles records show those plates trace to Furr, whose address is listed in the Stanly County town of Stanfield.
A 73-year-old man, Donald Gene Sullivan of Shallotte in Brunswick County, also is listed as an owner of the car. Sullivan previously lived in Kannapolis.
A woman who answered the phone at Sullivan’s home in Shallote on Monday said he had no comment about the Hairston incident.
On her Twitter and Instagram accounts, Furr was shown in photos with Hairston and indicates are they are friends. She has referred to him as a boyfriend and has posted about visiting him in Chapel Hill during the past month.
According to her Twitter posts, she was in Raleigh for Saturday night’s Lil’ Wayne concert at Walnut Creek Amphitheatre. Furr also has posted that she recently moved to Charlotte.
Both Hairston and Furr deleted their Twitter accounts on Monday afternoon.
According to the citation, when asked why he was traveling so fast, Hairston said he was in a hurry to get to Charlotte and that he thought the speed limit was 70 rather than the posted 65.
Hairston has an Aug. 30 court date in Rowan County on his latest charges.
Previously this year, Hairston was twice stopped by police in Durham County while driving rental cars tied to Thomas, a party promoter and convicted felon.
Hairston was stopped for speeding on U.S. 15-501 on May 13. At the time, he was driving a vehicle rented by Catinia Farrington, who owns a home with Thomas on Trotter Ridge Road in Durham.
Thomas and Farrington have rented four vehicles since February that have received a combined nine parking tickets on UNC’s campus, though it is not clear who was driving them at the time.
On June 5, Hairston was stopped at a traffic checkpoint in east Durham and charged with possession of less than one-half ounce of marijuana and driving without a license. His passengers, Miykael Faulcon and Carlos Sanford, both of Durham, also were charged with marijuana possession.
The charges against Hairston were dropped on July 22 after he completed a drug assessment and presented his valid driver’s license.
Police also found 41 grams of marijuana and a 9 mm gun outside of the vehicle, but no one was charged for possessing those two items.
Durham County District Attorney Leon Stanback said at the time that Hairston was not treated any differently than anyone else charged with possessing a small amount of marijuana and the same record.
During each of the earlier incidents, Williams kept a low profile, saying he would wait until the situation played out in the legal system before deciding punishment.
On July 15, though, he broke his silence with a statement saying Hairston faced “serious consequences” for “serious mistakes.”
“We will care about each individual, but there will be serious actions taken that will fix these issues,” Williams said. “I take pride in our values and how we have conducted ourselves for a long time here at Carolina, and this time will pass but it will be dealt with strongly.”
Hairston’s use of cars not belonging to him has drawn the scrutiny of UNC’s compliance department and the NCAA since it could be determined to be an illegal extra benefit.
On Sunday night, when the third traffic stop involving a third car became public, Williams suspended Hairston indefinitely though his scholarship remains intact.