Stash out at 98 Rock in wake of DUI charges

The Baltimore Sun

Dave Hill program director at 98 Rock, said Thursday afternoon that the station had “parted ways” with afternoon disc jockey Stephen G. Smith, known to listeners as Stash.

Smith has not been on the air since an automobile accident in Harford County Sunday that sent five people to the hospital for treatment of minor injuries and resulted in 48-year-old disc jockey being charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, negligent driving and other traffic offenses, according to police.

“We have parted ways with Stash,” Hill said. “Both he and we have agreed. I can't say more than that because it is a personnel matter.”

As to a replacement for Smith in the afternoon drive-time slot, Hill said, “The advertising goes out tomorrow morning.”

Smith Thursday night said he could neither confirm nor deny his departure from the station.

“They won't let me talk about it,” he said. “I signed something that says no discussion... In the blink of an eye, I ruined 24 years of great service and radio.”

Smith hosted an afternoon drive-time show that ran from 3 to 7 p.m. weekdays on the Hearst-owned station.

The charges filed in connection with the Sunday accident were the latest of several filed in the last two years against Smith, who lives in Bel Air.

Police said Smith was driving a Nissan Quest north on Route 24 at an apparent high rate of speed Sunday when he struck the rear of a Hyundai stopped at the signal near the intersection with Interstate 95. The impact pushed that vehicle into an SUV, also stopped at the light. Smith drove about 300 feet north of the collision scene before stopping his vehicle, police said.

Investigating officers said he was exhibiting signs typical of a person under the influence and was arrested at the scene.

The driver of the Hyundai and four passengers were taken by ambulance to Upper Chesapeake Medical Center, where they were treated and later released, police said. The driver and passenger in the SUV did not sustain injuries serious enough to require hospitalization, police said.

Among Smith's other pending traffic cases is a court date Thursday in Towson for a speeding charge. He also was charged in Baltimore City in April with driving while his license was suspended, and is scheduled to be in court Oct. 5 in that case.

In Harford County, he was charged June 12 with failing to display his license on demand and speeding; he has an Aug. 14 court date.

In March, Smith was found guilty in Harford County Circuit Court of speeding and fined $90.

In October 2011, Smith was charged in Baltimore County with driving under the influence of alcohol, driving an unsafe vehicle on a highway, negligent driving and other offenses. He was found guilty of negligent driving and given probation before judgment on the driving while impaired charge. The other charges were dropped.

Mary Gail Hare contributed to this report

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