By Joe Gorman
A Warren man was sentenced Wednesday to six months in the Mahoning County jail and ordered to attend an in-house treatment program for alcohol abuse after being sentenced for his fifth driving-under-the-influence charge.
Donald King, 44, who court records show has an address on Larchmont Avenue Northeast, pleaded with Judge Lou D’Apolito of Mahoning County Common Pleas Court to stay out of prison, saying he is trying to stay sober and that he wants other people to stay sober.
Judge D’Apolito said he wasn’t impressed.
“If you’re the poster child for sobriety, I don’t want to join,” the judge answered.
Michael McCarthy, an assistant county prosecutor, said he was seeking a two-year prison sentence for King. King was indicted in November 2011 for a motorcycle accident in Austintown in which police said he was drunk and two people on his motorcycle were injured, McCarthy said.
McCarthy said that while King was out on bond for that charge, he was arrested for his sixth DUI. That case already has been resolved, the judge said.
Judge D’Apolito said the case was complicated, noting that when King was arrested for this case, his blood-alcohol content registered a .084, barely over the legal limit of .08, and that he has stayed sober since his last arrest.
King promised he would never get in trouble again.
“I plead with you. Please don’t send me to prison,” King said. “If I can just have this chance, no one will ever see me again.”
Judge D’Apolito said that King’s conduct within the past eight months led him to believe he was less likely to get in trouble again.
If King is arrested again, however, Judge D’Apolito promised him he would be sent to prison.
“It will not be a short term,” the judge added.
The judge placed King on a five-year probation with the first six months to be served in the jail with credit for 13 days served. He also must complete the treatment program, which typically takes at least four months and will be served at a halfway house.
The judge also suspended King’s driver’s license for five years, but said he can apply to drive for work privileges after three years.