Dell Computer's `Steven' is arrested on drug charges
By Associated Press, 2/10/2003 17:44
NEW YORK (AP) Dude! The actor who gained fame and a cult following as the slacker ''Steven'' in commercials for Dell computers was arrested buying a small bag of marijuana, police said.
Benjamin Curtis, a 22-year-old New York University drama student, was arraigned Monday on a misdemeanor drug possession charge. The charge assumes a suspect is not carrying more than a ''use amount'' enough to roll several marijuana cigarettes.
Police said he was arrested Sunday night on the Lower East Side after officers on a drug detail spotted him buying a small bag of marijuana from Omar Mendez, 19. Mendez faces drug sale and possession charges.
Curtis' portrayal of a surfer type who proclaims, ''Dude, yer gettin' a Dell!'' drove up computer sales and spawned T-shirts, caps, and backpacks, along with Web sites and online fan clubs.
At the arraignment, Criminal Court Judge Ellen Coin advised Curtis that his case will be dismissed, and his record expunged, if he avoids arrest during the next year.
Asked if he understood, Curtis said, ''Yes, ma'am.''
Outside court, Curtis' lawyer, James Moschella, said: ''We are confident that at the appropriate time, the charges will be dismissed.''