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Man draws jail time for impaired driving

April 20th, 2011 Posted in Opinion

By Jamee Dyches

LOGAN — A young father was sentenced to six days in the Cache County Jail after pleading guilty to impaired driving, a class B misdemeanor, and driving without registration, a class C misdemeanor, during a pretrial conference Tuesday morning.

Colby Rae Nielsen, 21, was pulled over on Nov. 27, 2010, after a police officer realized that the registration on his car had expired. The officer noticed the smell of alcohol coming from the vehicle and put Nielsen through a field sobriety test. He also took a Breathalyzer test, which revealed that he had a blood alcohol level of 1.117.

Randall Cox, Nielsen’s attorney, said, “He’s young and he doesn’t have a lot of disposable income. I would ask the court to take that into consideration.” Cox stated that while Nielsen has a full-time job, most of his income goes toward child support for his son.

“I haven’t seen my son in about four months because of this,” Nielsen added, after expressing his desire to set a better example for his son.

Prosecuting attorney Barbara Lachmar said Nielsen was previously charged with minor in possession of alcohol as well as possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia in 2010. “Banner year, 2010, huh?” Judge Thomas Willmore commented.

For the charge of impaired driving, Willmore sentenced Nielsen to 180 days in the Cache County Jail. Nielsen will only serve six days, as 174 of the days were suspended. Nielsen will be allowed to serve his jail time on the weekends, reporting to the jail each Friday night after work for three weeks. For the charge of driving without registration, Willmore sentenced Nielsen to 90 days in jail, but then suspended all 90 days.

Willmore ordered Nielsen to pay a fine of $1,080; $1,033 for impaired driving and $47 for driving without registration. Willmore put Nielsen on probation for one year, and ordered him not to use alcohol or drugs, be around alcohol or drugs, or go to places “where alcohol is the main item on the menu” while on on probation. Nielsen was also ordered to successfully complete drug and alcohol counseling at the Bear River Health Department, as well as attend one 12-step group meeting per week while on probation. Nielsen is also required to maintain a full-time job or education, not associate with known criminals, and submit to urinalysis upon request. “You’re getting six days in jail because you got the MIP,” Willmore said. “You have should have learned from that, and you should have learned from the marijuana charge.”


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