Gina-Lisa Lohfink, 21, who was a contestant on Heidi Klum's show in 2007, left the court room without being sanctioned due to a lack of evidence, German daily Bild reported.
"My grandfather is dying. Those who know me from TV know what a straight-shooter I am," Lohfink tearfully told the courtroom in what Bild called "a scene reminiscent of a film drama."
The prosecution had pushed for fines totalling €25,000 and a one-year driving ban. Lohfink was caught in October, 2007 in the passenger seat of a rental car with a blood alcohol content of 0.168 without a driver's license.
Bild reported that the would-be Topmodel admitted she had been drunk during the incident. "We'd been in a disco," she said. "I'd had a lot to drink."
The court was unable to determine who had been in the driver's seat. Lohfink's 17-year-old friend, who was also in the car at the time, initially said Lohfink had been driving but quickly switched to the passenger seat before authorities reached the car. But during the trial, the friend told a different story. Lohfink told the court she had been sitting in the passenger seat and had dozed off right away because she was intoxicated, the paper said.
According to news agency AP, despite her active media presence, there was also confusion about Lohfink's financial situation and whether she could afford to pay the proposed fines.
"I'm not guilty. I have a clean conscience," Lohfink told the court.