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Pierre man tells judge how “very, very drunk” he was when arrested

November 17, 2017 GMT

Kevin Fahey of Pierre told Judge John Brown on Tuesday he had been driving drunk on Sept. 5 coming back to Pierre from Fort Pierre.

“Very, very drunk,” said Fahey, who is 30.

Exactly how drunk, state Judge Brown asked during Fahey’s hearing in court.

“Four two four,” Fahey said, meaning 0.424 percent blood alcohol content (BAC), or more than five times the legal drunk driving limit of 0.08 percent.

“That is very, very high,” Brown said. “Is that a common occurrence for you?”

“No,” Fahey said.

“Tell me, back on September 5, how you came” to be arrested driving that drunk, Brown said.

“It’s my understanding I left (an establishment in Fort Pierre) . . . I wanted to go home.” Fahey said. “I got across the bridge (over the Missouri River) and got surprised by three police (vehicles). Somebody had called me in for drinking and driving.”

“Had you been drinking?”

“Yes, your honor.”

That night – or early morning, actually – Fahey submitted to drawing of his blood at the Hughes County Jail where his blood alcohol content was measured at 0.424 percent, he said.

A normal DUI offense is a Class 1 misdemeanor, with a maximum penalty of one year in jail.

But Hughes County’s State’s Attorney had filed a “Part 2 information,” charging him with being a habitual offender with two previous DUI convictions: in Stanley County in September 2008 and in Hughes County in January 2015.

That makes the new DUI charge against him the equivalent of a Class 6 felony with a maximum sentence of two years in state prison, Brown told Fahey, who pleaded guilty to the charge on Tuesday.

As part of a plea deal, Kloeppner agreed to dismiss a misdemeanor charge that Fahey had an open container of alcoholic beverage in his car when arrested.

Fahey was driving a 2018 Honda sedan when he was arrested at 1:54 a.m., Sept. 5 at the Clark gas station on Sioux Avenue in Pierre, according to the ticket in court records.

He told court officials, when applying for a court-appointed attorney shortly after his arrest, that he was unemployed and owned a 1997 Honda Accord and a 1998 Ford Explorer SUV.

His attorney, Brad Schreiber, was in court with him on Tuesday.

Brown set Fahey’s sentencing for Jan. 9 and said he wanted to see a pre-sentence report.

A court services official told Brown that a pre-sentence report had been done on Fahey in 2002 – when he would have been a juvenile offender – and that a simple update could be done, which Brown approved.