Rip Torn Denied Accelerated Rehab Program, Going to Trial

Rip Torn (Mug Shot)
Rip Torn (Mug Shot)

LITCHFIELD, Conn. (CBS/AP) Emmy-winning actor Rip Torn, 79, who is charged with breaking into a Connecticut bank while armed and drunk, does not qualify for a special probation program that would have cleared his record, says the judge who denied his request.

The accelerated rehabilitation program was designed for first-time nonviolent offenders in which charges would be dropped after a probation period. Torn was turned down by Judge James Ginocchio, who considered the "Men in Black" actor's charges too serious to warrant the rehab shortcut. 

One of the gun charges carries a 1-year minimum prison sentence. The judge ordered that the case proceed to trial.

He was additionally charged with felony burglary, but the charges were dropped when it became clear that Torn had no intention of robbing the bank.

Torn was arrested and charged on January 29 with breaking into a bank near his Salisbury, Conn. home, which he thought was his house, by all accounts.

Torn has been known to struggle with substance abuse in the past and had recently completed a rehabilitation program shortly before the break-in. His attorney stated that the actor remains in outpatient treatment including Alcoholics Anonymous, and that he relinquished all of his weapons.

Torn has no history of violent behavior but has two previous drunk driving arrests.

The actor, whose real name is Elmore Rual Torn, has appeared on t-v's "30 Rock" and won an Emmy in 1996 for "The Larry Sanders Show." His recent movie credits include "The Insider," "Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story," and "Bee Movie."

Complete Coverage of Rip Torn on Crimesider