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Clayton man referred to Drug Court for felony DWI plea


A Clayton man was referred to Jefferson County Drug Court on Wednesday after pleading guilty in County Court to felony driving while intoxicated.

Michael H. Meeks, 35, of 34161 Route 12E, was referred to the substance abuse rehabilitation program that serves as an alternative to incarceration after admitting that he drove while intoxicated March 30 on Route 12 in the town of Pamelia.

If he is successful in the program, the felony count will be vacated and he will be allowed to plead guilty to DWI as a misdemeanor. He then would be sentenced to three years’ probation and a $1,000 fine. He also would have his driver’s license revoked and be ordered to install an ignition interlock device on any vehicle he owns or operates.

If he is unsuccessful, he faces a state prison sentence of 113 to 4 years and a $3,500 fine. He also would have his license revoked and be subject to the interlock provision.

In other court activity:

Bruce I. Kraeger, 23, Constable, successfully completed Drug Court and had an October 2011 guilty plea to first-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of motor vehicle, a felony, vacated and was allowed to plead to the same count in the second degree as a misdemeanor. A plea to misdemeanor DWI also entered in October 2011 remained unchanged. He was accused of DWI and driving without a driver’s license in July 2011 on State Street in Watertown.

Mr. Kraeger subsequently was sentenced to three years’ probation, was fined $750, had his license revoked and was ordered subject to the interlock provision.

Christopher L. Arruda, 30, of 906 Water St., pleaded guilty to fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon. He subsequently was sentenced to an unspecified amount of time served at the Metro-Jefferson Public Safety Building and a one-year conditional discharge.

He had been charged with threatening to stab Jonathan W.G. O’Riley with a knife during a June 16 altercation on Flower Avenue East.

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