Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Sentencing set in felony DUI case

Hailey man pleads guilty to 3rd drunk-driving offense in 10 years


By TERRY SMITH
Express Staff Writer

Matthew T. Keefe

Sentencing has been scheduled for March 14 for a Hailey man who pleaded guilty Monday to a third DUI charge within the past 10 years.

According to court records, 41-year-old Matthew T. Keefe has prior misdemeanor DUI convictions in Blaine County in 2005 and 2006. Under Idaho law, the prior convictions qualified Keefe for a felony for his latest drunk-driving offense on Sept. 19.

A probable-cause affidavit filed by Blaine County Sheriff's Deputy Skip Liddle states that Keefe had a blood-alcohol level of .223 when arrested. The level is nearly three times the legal blood-alcohol level for driving in Idaho of .08.

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Liddle wrote in the affidavit that he stopped Keefe shortly before 11 p.m. on Buttercup Road north of Hailey because of non-functioning taillights on Keefe's 2004 Volkswagen.

Liddle wrote that Keefe smelled of alcohol and failed field sobriety tests.

Keefe pleaded guilty Monday in accord with a plea agreement with the Blaine County Prosecuting Attorney's Office. Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Matt Fredback said he will recommend at sentencing that Keefe receive a five-year suspended jail sentence, serve 30 days in jail, provide 80 hours of community service, be placed on probation for three years and have his driver's license suspended for 18 months.

Felony DUI is punishable in Idaho by up to 10 years in prison.

According to court records, Keefe was sentenced to five days in jail for his 2005 misdemeanor DUI conviction and 10 days in jail for his second conviction in 2006.

Keefe remains free on $1,000 bond. He is represented by Ketchum attorney Brian Elkins.

Terry Smith: tsmith@mtexpress.com




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