Hamilton coach faces DUI charge

Published 12:00 am Monday, August 11, 2003

HAMILTON, Ohio - The head football coach at Hamilton High School was charged with drunken driving Saturday, then posted bond and attended a practice.

Eric Gillespie, 38, also was charged with failure to control his vehicle and leaving the scene of a single-car accident.

A Butler County sheriff's department report said Gillespie drove off the side of a road at 6:45 a.m., struck a concrete barrier, then regained control and went on. He was later stopped by a sheriff's deputy and arrested.

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He was released from the county jail after posting bond. He missed the beginning of the team's practice Saturday morning.

''We had heard he was in an accident, so once he showed up it lifted everyone up and we had a really positive practice,'' defensive back Brandon Underwood said.

Gillespie is entering his second season as Hamilton's head coach. He was previously at Fairborn High School, and commutes from Dayton.

Hamilton athletic director John Ross said the matter is being investigated. Spokeswoman Joni Copas said the city school district also was looking into it.

''The administration will talk about it, probably on Monday, and then decide what kind of action to take,'' she said.