Dave Savini pleads guilty to DUI, other charges are dropped

Clifford Ward of the Chicago Tribune reports:

CBS Channel 2 reporter Dave Savini pleaded guilty today to DUI but prosecutors dropped other charges related to a January incident in the parking lot of a Naperville fast food restaurant.

Savini, 47, was ordered to pay a $1,700 fine and placed on a year of supervision. He will also perform 200 hours of community service, attend a victim impact panel and receive alcohol counseling.

“There’s no doubt about it, I made a mistake and used bad judgment to drive after drinking,” Savini said in a written statement issued after the hearing. “I take full responsibility and I apologize – I deeply regret it.”

As part of the negotiated plea, prosecutors dropped all other charges, including battery, leaving the scene of an accident and child endangerment, which were also lodged against Savini, following a minor traffic accident Jan. 4 in a Taco Bell parking lot.

His attorney, Terry Ekl, said he had reviewed restaurant videotape of the incident involving Savini and another motorist, and said Savini did not shove or batter the other motorist.

“That’s why I love video. With video, you get the truth,” Ekl said.

Savini had brought his son, 14, and the son’s friend, to get food after spending the night watching a football game on TV, Ekl said. As they were leaving, Savini backed into the bumper hitch on another vehicle but caused little or no damage, Ekl said.

Police arrested Savini about three miles from the restaurant, and his blood-alcohol level was later tested at .13, according to reports.

Savini’s lawyer got a very good plea deal to get the battery, child endangerment and leaving the scene of the accident charges dropped.  As is often the case, objective video evidence showed that the police version of this case was not the entire story.

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