Recently, this blog reported a story involving an upward departure from the Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines in a Stearns County criminal vehicular homicide case. Last week, an Anoka County judge sentenced a woman who had pled guilty to felony driving while impaired to six months, much of which reportedly will be served on home monitoring.
The woman was facing a four-year prison term for her felony DWI conviction under the state sentencing guidelines. The woman had been charged with felony DWI after she was involved in a car accident in the parking lot outside her Coon Rapids apartment. She had previously been convicted of a felony level DWI-related offense and the most recent charge was brought as a felony due to her DWI record.
In 2004, the woman had spent time in state prison after a felony DWI conviction following a fatal car accident that occurred when she was reportedly high on methamphetamine. The prosecutor asked the judge in the most recent case to impose the presumptive 4-year prison sentence. Her defense argued to the judge that she was amenable to chemical dependency treatment.
The judge found that the woman is amenable to treatment and ordered a lenient sentence. The judge reportedly recognized that the defendant had repeatedly passed alcohol and drug tests while the most recent DWI case was pending and that she has done well in treatment.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports that the judge cautioned the woman that if she were to violate any of the terms of her probation, the judge would not hesitate to execute a prison sentence. However, if the woman follows the conditions of probation, she will only serve the six months detention, some spent in county jail and other time to be served on home monitoring.
Source: Star Tribune, “Anoka County judge gives woman a break in DWI case,” David Chanen, May 22, 2012