Further reports (and Dispatch photographs) confirmed that the comedian was pulled over by Gangnam Police around midnight Saturday, at which point he refused the onsite breath alcohol level test. Instead, Noh opted for blood alcohol testing performed at the precinct. Results for such testing will take a few days to return.
A police source commented that while Noh Hong-chul did not appear intoxicated, he did “smell of alcohol,” which warranted blood alcohol testing.
While in Korea a blood alcohol level of above .05% is legally considered driving while intoxicated, blood alcohol levels above .035% are also punishable by law. Noh’s refusal to undergo a breath test onsite, regardless of his blood alcohol level test results, could result in the revocation of his license.
Even without full confirmation of his inebriated state, Noh was quick to release an apology statement through MBC as well as an announcement that he will be stepping down from his hosting positions on both Infinite Challenge and I Live Alone.
I sincerely apologize for causing troubles to you for driving under the influence of alcohol. I’m really sorry for disappointing many of you who supported me by making a bad decision. So, I’m expressing my intent to leave the TV programs that I’m currently appearing in. This is my own decision to cause no further trouble to (the programs’) viewers.
Unfortunately, this is not the first drunk driving scandal for Infinite Challenge in 2014. Earlier this year, cast member Gil was also arrested for drunk driving and subsequently left the show.
While Noh Hong-chul uses this time to reflect, the originally 7 member Infinite Challenge cast will continue with 5 members. It remains unclear what will happen to I Live Alone, for which Noh was the only host.
Readers: What’s your reaction to yet another drunk driving scandal this year? How do you think Infinite Challenge will fair in the wake of Noh’s absence?