Singer Ray Charles was sentenced to five years probation and fined $10,000 today (December 3, 1966), after he was busted with heroin in 1964.
The ordeal unfolded 1964, when Ray Charles was arrested at Logan International Airport in Boston.
It was his third arrest for possession of heroin, the first one coming in Philadelphia in 1958 and the second in Indianapolis in 1961.
Ray Charles went on trial for the situation in 1965, and his sentencing didn’t take place until December 3, 1966 as he attempted to kick his heroin habit.
According to Ray Charles himself, In August 1965, he checked himself into the St. Francis Hospital Hospital in Lynwood, California.
“From that day on, I have never fucked with heroin. I wasn’t weaned. I didn’t take pills. I refused to fo with their sedatives and their tranquilizers,” Ray Charles said in his autobiography “Brother Ray.”
Ray Charles described the detox process as he weaned himself off of heroin.
“I vomited and vomited and vomited to the was nothing left the vomit” Ray Charles said. “And then I vomited some more. I was heaving up poison. The poison which was heroin, the poison my body was now naturally rejecting.”
According to Ray Charles, he beat the physical addiction within 96 hours, but the mental addiction was the harder part to deal with.
After kicking his habit, Ray Charles still had to go to court to deal with the possession charge.
According to Ray, his lawyers at the time, wanted him to snitch on his heroin supplier.
“We’d tell the court that these pushers were preying on the minds of the young, getting kids hooked on heroin. We’d look good by exposing these cats,” Ray Charles revealed.
“Bullshit. I refused to do anything of the kind,” Ray Charles continued. “I’ve always had to seek out the pushers; they never came looking for me. No one ever made me spend my money on dope. I dug it, and I did it.”