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Roger Clinton makes reckless driving plea

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Roger Clinton  


TORRANCE, California (CNN) -- In a deal that spares him jail time, Roger Clinton pleaded guilty Tuesday to a non-alcohol-related charge of reckless driving.

As part of the deal, the three initial charges -- two counts of drunken driving and one for disturbing the peace -- were dismissed. Clinton, who is the half-brother of former President Bill Clinton, could have faced a maximum 270 days in prison on those charges.

Torrance Superior Court Judge Jesse Rodriguez sentenced Clinton to 24 months probation and ordered him to pay a fine of $1,351. In addition, the judge said he must report any new arrests within five days and that he must stay at least 100 yards away from the Lighthouse nightclub in Hermosa Beach, where the incident began.

The judge also said Clinton must not operate a vehicle with any amount of alcohol in his system, and he can't refuse an alcohol or drug test if requested by police.

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Clinton attorney, Mark Geragos, said his client is "extremely pleased" with the outcome.

"It's a vindication of what we've said all along -- that it was a setup," said Geragos.

The charge stems from a February 17 incident in which Clinton was accused of scuffling with a doorman at the Lighthouse, where he allegedly had drinks, and then left in a car. He was followed by police and charged with two counts of DUI.

Geragos said he presented an audio tape to the judge that contained four of the seven arresting officers talking about his arrest 45 minutes beforehand.

"Before he was even driving, they were staking him out," said Geragos.

Roger Clinton was one of 140 people pardoned by his brother in the last days of the Clinton presidency. The younger Clinton had been convicted of a cocaine drug charge in Arkansas in 1985, while his brother was the state's governor.



Greta@LAW




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