A 49-year-old Inver Grove Heights woman has resolved her criminal charges involving allegations of a drunk driving accident in Eagan from May of 2012 with a plea agreement. The woman was accused of a string of charges, including criminal vehicular operation. In addition, she faced charges of gross misdemeanor DWI, and misdemeanor counts alleging a traffic offense and fleeing police on foot.
In June, the woman entered into a plea deal, which may allow her to keep the criminal vehicular operation charge from being entered onto her criminal record (a criminal record differs from arrest records or civil driving records associated with a DWI arrest).
She pled guilty to the CVO offense (and one DWI count), but under her deal, the court granted what is called a stay of adjudication on the CVO charge. Essentially, the procedure holds the case before a conviction is entered on the person’s record. If she is able to successfully complete the terms and conditions of probation, the charge will be dismissed.
The woman was convicted (under the plea agreement) of a gross misdemeanor DWI charge. She was sentenced this month to 10 days in jail and other provisions. She will be on probation for three years and if successful will have the CVO charge dismissed upon completion of the probationary term.
A stay of adjudication in Minnesota often requires the consent of the prosecutor (and are rare in DWI cases). If the prosecutor objects to a stay of adjudication, the criminal defense needs to show that the prosecutor abused its discretion in bringing the charge, under current case law.
But, a criminal defense lawyer may negotiate with the prosecutor seeking an agreement to recommend a stay of adjudication to the court. The plea agreement may serve to minimize the consequences of the charge in an appropriate case.
Source: Eagan Patch, “Inver Grove Woman Sentenced for DWI, Role in Eagan Crash,” Clare Kennedy, Aug. 27, 2013