Judge: No contest to DUI
Retired Sutter County Judge Timothy Evans pleaded no contest Wednesday to driving with a blood alcohol content almost three times the legal limit and was sentenced to four days in jail.
Sutter County Judge Robert Damron also sentenced Evans, his former colleague, to 36 months probation, a $1,725 fine and a nine-month driving school.
Because he was charged with a misdemeanor and not a felony, Evans legally was not required to attend the arraignment and did not do so.
He declined comment through his attorney, Richard A. Thomas.
Evans, 63, who served until recently as a visiting judge in Yuba and other counties, agreed to report to Sutter County Jail on Feb. 23.
He will not be eligible for the jail's work release program, said Assistant District Attorney Fred Schroeder.
The no-contest plea was part of an agreement in which the District Attorney's Office dismissed a charge of hit and run driving. Evans hit a parked pickup truck in the parking lot of the Red Robin restaurant in Yuba City on Nov. 6 before going inside for lunch.
The former judge agreed to pay the pickup's owner $463.60 in damages.
Schroeder called the plea agreement standard in a first-offense DUI case.
Evans was scheduled for a Jan. 16 arraignment but exercised his right to appear in court earlier. The policy has been in place for the past decade for defendants who have not earlier failed to appear in court, said Damron.
Damron said the Appeal-Democrat was notified earlier Wednesday of the last-minute arraignment in an effort to make sure that Evans was being treated “like everybody else.”
For the same reason, Damron said, he decided to handle the case himself instead of asking for a judge from another county.
The county's usual visiting judge, Ann Rutherford of Butte County, has a long professional association with Evans, just like all Sutter County judges, said Damron.
Evans was sentenced to summary probation. That means he will not be required to meet with a probation agent or be subject to visits or searches by an agent, said Schroeder.
Damron said Evans cannot have any measurable amount of alcohol in his system while driving during probation.
Appeal-Democrat reporter Rob Young can be reached at 749-4710. You may e-mail him at email@example.com.