Friday, January 7, 2011

Drunk driving leads to jail

Bellevue man gets 45 days behind bars for felony conviction

Express Staff Writer

A Bellevue man has been sentenced to 45 days in jail for a felony conviction of driving while drunk.

"I hope you've come to realize that your felony drunk driving days are over," Judge Robert J. Elgee told 47-year-old Thomas Daniel Evans at sentencing Monday in Blaine County 5th District Court.

Evans was charged with a felony for driving drunk in Bellevue on Sept. 24. The Bellevue Marshal's Office reported in a probable-cause affidavit that Evans was pulled over for running a stop sign at the intersection of Fourth and Pine streets.

According to the Blaine County Prosecuting Attorney's Office, Evans had a blood-alcohol level of .15, which is nearly double the Idaho legal level of .08.

Evans was charged with a felony because of two prior misdemeanor DUI convictions. According to court records, he was previously convicted of DUI in Blaine County in 2000 and 2006. Idaho law allows a felony to be charged for a third drunk driving charge within a 10-year period.

Evans pleaded guilty to the charge in November.

Elgee also gave Evans a four-year suspended prison sentence, placed him on probation for three years, fined him $1,000 and suspended his driver's license for two years.

As a condition of probation, Elgee ruled that Evans must complete an outpatient alcohol treatment program.

Evans told the judge that he had been involved in Alcoholics Anonymous but stopped attending meetings "and then it was back to drinking."

"I hope treatment works," Elgee told Evans. "If you come back here, your life's really going to take a turn for the worse."

Evans, who had been free on $30,000 bond, was placed in handcuffs at the conclusion of the hearing and taken to the Blaine County jail to begin serving his sentence.

Terry Smith:

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