Michael Phelps to 'attend a program'

Updated: October 5, 2014, 10:30 AM ET

ESPN.com news services

Olympic swimming great Michael Phelps said Sunday he is "taking some time away" from swimming and will "attend a program that will provide the help I need to better understand myself" after his arrest for driving under the influence in Baltimore last week.

Phelps announced his intentions in a series of tweets Sunday. He registered a .14 percent on a Breathalyzer test after he was stopped on a speeding violation last week, the second time he has been charged with a DUI in Maryland.

Phelps, 29, was charged last Tuesday with driving under the influence, excessive speed and crossing double lane lines in the Fort McHenry Tunnel on Interstate 95 in his native Baltimore, according to the Maryland Transportation Authority. His trial is scheduled for Nov. 19.

Phelps is the most decorated Olympian of all time with 22 Olympic medals, including 18 gold.

He retired after the 2012 London Olympics, but made a comeback to competition in April and won three gold medals while representing the United States' team in last month's Pan Pacific championships.

Phelps also was charged with DUI in 2004 on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, and he received 18 months' probation and a $250 fine. Phelps also was required to deliver a presentation on alcohol awareness to students at three high schools.

The conviction in that case was waived, which means Phelps this time faces the same penalties a first-time offender would. If convicted of the latest charges, he faces up to one year in jail, a $1,000 fine and the loss of his driver's license for six months.

Phelps also generated negative attention in 2009, when a photo in a British newspaper showed him inhaling from a marijuana pipe.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.