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Rockies Co-Owner Gets Probation

May 8, 2000

GREELEY, Colo. (AP) _ Colorado Rockies’ co-owner Charlie Monfort pleaded guilty Monday to a reduced drunken-driving charge and was sentenced to 18 months probation.

Monfort faced a charge of driving under the influence but reached an agreement with prosecutors and pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of driving while ability impaired. In addition to probation, Monfort was sentenced to 48 hours of community service and ordered to undergo an alcohol treatment program.

Monfort was arrested shortly after 1 a.m. June 23 after leaving a restaurant.

Police said his blood-alcohol level was 0.209 percent. In Colorado, a motorist is considered legally impaired with a blood-alcohol level of 0.1 percent or higher.

Defense attorney Chuck Dickson said last month that Monfort had a severe case of heartburn at the time, which skewed the results of the alcohol test.

The judge was scheduled to rule last month on whether heartburn would be allowed as a defense but prosecutors told the judge they had worked out a plea bargain with Dickson.

Dickson’s partner, Tom Grant, said the so-called ``reflux defense″ would have provided a valid way to fight the charge but could have resulted in a lengthy trial.

``We believed very strongly in it (the reflux defense). But I also think Mr. Monfort wanted to do what is in his best interests,″ Grant said.

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