US

Kerry Kennedy: I didn't accept plea deal because I'm innocent, had competent counsel

Kerry Kennedy, second from left, walks with her mother, Ethel Kennedy, right, as she leaves the Westchester County Courthouse, Friday, Feb. 28, 2014 in White Plains, N.Y. Kennedy was acquitted Friday of drugged driving after she accidentally took a sleeping pill and then sideswiped a truck in a wild highway drive in July 2012, she said she didn't remember. (AP Photo/The Journal News, Tania Savayan)  NYC OUT, NO SALES, ONLINE OUT, TV OUT, NEWSDAY INTERNET OUT; MAGS OUT

Kerry Kennedy, second from left, walks with her mother, Ethel Kennedy, right, as she leaves the Westchester County Courthouse, Friday, Feb. 28, 2014 in White Plains, N.Y. Kennedy was acquitted Friday of drugged driving after she accidentally took a sleeping pill and then sideswiped a truck in a wild highway drive in July 2012, she said she didn't remember. (AP Photo/The Journal News, Tania Savayan) NYC OUT, NO SALES, ONLINE OUT, TV OUT, NEWSDAY INTERNET OUT; MAGS OUT  (The Associated Press)

Days after her acquittal on drugged driving charges, Kerry Kennedy says she won her case because she was innocent, she had competent counsel and she was willing to go to trial.

Kennedy made the comments Monday in an interview with Matt Lauer on NBC's "Today."

She testified that she mistakenly took a sleeping pill instead of her thyroid medication before hitting a tractor-trailer in 2012.

She told Lauer that many people can't afford competent counsel like she could "so they plead to things they didn't do."

Kennedy says the charges hurt her work as a human rights advocate. She noted a plea would've barred her from some countries for years.

She's the daughter of Robert F. Kennedy, niece of President John F. Kennedy and ex-wife of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (KWOH'-moh).