UPDATE: Supervisor Heidi Hall pleads guilty to 2 DUI counts
October 23, 2017
Nevada County Supervisor Heidi Hall on Monday pleaded guilty to two DUI accusations, setting the stage for her sentencing next month.
Attorneys initially anticipated arguing on Nov. 14 in Nevada County Superior Court about Hall's blood alcohol level. At issue was whether Hall, who didn't appear at Monday's plea, must attend a 3- or 9-month DUI class as part of her sentence. A blood alcohol level of at least .20 percent would require the longer class.
Stephen Munkelt, Hall's defense attorney, said he had questions about his client's alcohol level. Deputy District Attorney Casey Ayer said two different tests showed the levels at .20 and .22, respectively.
In California someone can be charged with DUI if they have a blood alcohol level of .08 percent.
The argument led Judge Robert Tice-Raskin to schedule the November hearing to resolve the issue, though Hall on Monday afternoon said she'd forego that process.
"It won't be happening," Hall said via Facebook Messenger. "I'm accepting the results despite my concerns about the fact finding so that we can all move on."
“But as her attorney I was concerned about the additional burden on her, both the time and cost, on a 9-month DUI program,” Munkelt said. “She's already started the class.”
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Hall's sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 14. Her sentence is unknown, because it wasn't part of a negotiated plea deal.
Munkelt said he can still argue that his client's alcohol level was lower than .20 percent, though on Monday he'd made no decision about what he'll say at the hearing.
"What she said was she does not want to go forward with the hearing," Munkelt said of his client. "There will be a sentencing. There are obviously issues to be discussed, but we're not going to present witnesses."
Hall's plea to driving under the influence and driving while having a .08 percent or higher blood alcohol level, as well as a special allegation that she had a blood alcohol level of .15 percent or more, stems from a June 2 incident at Condon Park.
Grass Valley police said officers responded to the park after Hall backed into a parked vehicle. They then spoke with Hall, who displayed symptoms of intoxication. They arrested her after she took a series of field sobriety tests.
To contact Staff Writer Alan Riquelmy, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 530-477-4239.