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Why Nicole Richie

Can Still Drive

6/1/2007 5:23 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

0601_nicole_ritchie_mug1-2TMZ ran a story earlier today saying that officials from the DMV and the D.A. couldn't explain why Nicole Richie didn't have her drivers license automatically suspended, more than six months after she was busted driving the wrong way on a Burbank freeway and charged with DUI. After all, Paris had her license suspended 5 months after she was busted for DUI. Well, after more digging, we've finally gotten to the bottom of the mystery.

Under California law, the DMV must suspend the license of anyone busted for driving with a .08 alcohol level or higher. In Richie's case, alcohol was not a factor. At the time of her arrest, Richie admitted she had taken Vicodin and smoked pot, but there were no traces of alcohol, therefore, an automatic suspension was not an option.

If, however, Richie is convicted, her license will be on the line, especially since this is her second DUI in 4 years.

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