Bad influence

Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.

Got some bad news to report today. Saturday night, I was cited for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol. There was not an accident. There’s also not much I can say right now about my guilt or innocence, although it is my intention to write the full story after I appear in court—after all, what’s a story without an end?

I try to be honest whenever possible, though. And a failure to write about myself in this paper when I brush up against the law is the kind of hypocrisy I hate. I’m not going to hide from the court of public opinion simply because if the same thing had happened to a politician, I’m pretty sure we would not give him or her the benefit.

The penalties for a first-time DUI are stiff, including probation of three to six months; suspension of driving privileges; from two days to six months in jail or community service; Nevada DUI School (alcohol awareness program); fines ranging from $400 to $1,200 plus court costs; and Nevada’s Victim Impact Panel.

This is serious business. I’m just beginning to find out all the repercussions, but no matter how the court finds, I’m going to have to explain what happened to my son, family and associates. It’s embarrassing and shameful to even have my name associated with the accusation.

People who know me, or who have been out on the town with me, know I’ve always been a proponent of grabbing a cab if there’s even been a couple glasses of wine consumed with dinner. I’m only going to say that this is still true, and I want everyone to realize that the police are out there, they’re vigilant, and it’s their job to protect the public from anyone who gets behind the wheel with even a couple drinks under their belt.

This pretty much puts a capper on what’s been a pretty tough year for me. It’ll be up to me to see if this is the dark moment before the dawn.