Painter Thomas Kinkade pleads not guilty to DUI charge

SALINAS - Painter Thomas Kinkade has pleaded not guilty to a misdemeanor charge of driving under the influence stemming from a traffic stop in Carmel.

The 52-year-old, charged under the name William Thomas Kincade, was arrested June 11 during a routine traffic stop. California Highway Patrol Officer Robert Lehman said Kinkade smelled of alcohol and failed a field sobriety test. He was released from jail the next day after posting bail.

Kinkade's lawyer entered the not guilty plea in Monterey County Superior Court on Tuesday on his client's behalf. Attorney John Coniglio asked the judge delay a pretrial hearing until July 29 to allow him to retest a blood sample taken from Kinkade the night of his arrest.

The artist, famous for scenes of cottages, country gardens and churches in dewy morning light, was not present in court.