Sentence For Hit and Run

A 49-year-old Murray man received two concurrent six month sentences in the county jail for hit and run.

The Cassgram reports Daniel J. McDonnell was the driver of a pickup last March that struck the rear of a passenger car on Highway 1. The car went into the ditch and the pickup left the scene. The sheriff’s report said a deputy attempted to stop the pickup on Highway 1 but it continued on until it reached the McDonnell residence, where McDonnell was arrested. He refused a blood alcohol content test.

The 64-year-old female driver of the car was taken to the hospital by rescue squad for treatment of her injuries.

In court this week, Deputy Cass County Attorney Steve Sunde argued for a year in jail and revocation of McDonnell’s driver’s license for 15 years. Although charged as a second offense DUI, Sunde said it amounted to McDonnell’s third DUI. The arresting officer described McDonnell as “very inebriated,” said Sunde. “He hit someone and left the scene …that shows callousness.”

Defense attorney Julie Bear asked for probation. She said McDonnell is “very remorseful” and admits he should not have been driving that night. He had “no clue” he had hit another vehicle, said Bear.

The “extenuating and aggravating circumstances” of continuing to drink and drive after two previous DUIs and then leaving the scene of a personal injury accident took probation off the table, said Cass County District Court Judge Randall Rehmeier.

The six month sentences were given for convictions on the DUI, 2nd offense-super, and for leaving the scene of the accident. Another concurrent 60 day sentence was given for refusal to submit to the blood alcohol test. McDonnell’s driver’s license was suspended for five years.

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