VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) _ Former boxing champion Pernell ``Sweetpea'' Whitaker was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, according to The Virginia Pilot.

Whitaker's car was stopped at about 3 a.m. Thursday, the newspaper said. He posted $1,000 bail and was released.

His blood-alcohol level was 0.13, the newspaper said, citing a source it did not identify. The legal limit is 0.08.

Whitaker's attorney, Lionel Hancock III, told the newspaper there was an ``incident'' involving the boxer Thursday morning but that he and Whitaker had not discussed the facts.

Hancock and a spokesman for the police did not immediately return telephone calls seeking comment today.

Whitaker's arrest came at a time when the boxer's career is at a crossroads. The six-time world champion is serving a six-month suspension from boxing as the result of a positive test for cocaine in February. The suspension ends Sept. 11.

That was Whitaker's second positive test within a four-month period. He also failed a drug test in conjunction with his Oct. 17 victory over Andrei Pestriaev at the Pequot's Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut.

As part of a settlement with the Mashantucket Pequot Gaming Commission to lift that suspension, Whitaker was required to take random drug tests and check into a rehab center if he tested positive again.

His first random drug test came back positive for cocaine in February. He checked into an undisclosed residential drug treatment center on March 9.

Whitaker was scheduled to fight WBA welterweight champion Ike Quartey on April 25. That fight was canceled, costing Whitaker a possible $3 million payday.