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Gary Coleman Pleads Not Guilty to Reckless Driving, Disorderly Conduct

Gary Coleman Pleads Not Guilty to Reckless Driving, Disorderly Conduct
Gary Coleman
Enos Solomon/FilmMagic

10/14/2008 AT 01:10 PM EDT

Gary Coleman pleaded not guilty Tuesday to reckless driving and disorderly conduct.

Coleman was more than an hour late to the hearing in a court in Payson, Utah, just south of Salt Lake City. His attorney, Randy Kester, says the tardiness was due to a misunderstanding.

Coleman faces a maximum of six months in jail if convicted of the misdemeanor reckless driving count, and a fine if found guilty of disorderly conduct.

The charges stem from a Sept. 6 altercation at a Payson bowling alley, where police say Coleman became agitated after Colt Rushton, 24, took photos of the actor.

Later, in the parking lot, Coleman, 40, allegedly hit Rushton with his car while backing out. Rushton was taken to a local hospital and treated for minor injuries.

"Mr. Coleman did nothing wrong," Kester tells PEOPLE. "It was Mr. Rushton who provoked this incident. My client was simply trying to leave the bowling alley." Coleman's next court date is set for Dec. 2.

Rushton's attorney, Dustin Lance, says, "It's time for Mr. Coleman to own up to his actions, given this isn't the first time he's had a conflict with a fan."

Rushton, who's currently on probation and home confinement for a drug-related case, has since filed a lawsuit against Coleman for damages.

In 1999, Coleman pleaded no contest to disturbing the peace after he punched a female autograph-seeker in California, for which he claimed self-defense.

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