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Article updated: 1/30/2013 2:00 PM

Mark Ditka pleads guilty to drug, alcohol charges

By Lee Filas

The son of football Hall-of-Famer Mike Ditka pleaded guilty to drug and alcohol charges Lake County court Wednesday.

Mark Ditka, 50, of Deerfield, will spend 24 months on probation after pleading guilty to single counts of driving under the influence of alcohol and possession of a controlled substance in front of Lake County Judge Mark Levitt.

Mark Ditka was also sentenced to 200 hours of community service, will donate $500 to the Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists and must adhere to a curfew that runs from 6 p.m. until 6 a.m.

Mark Ditka, who serves as a restaurant manager in Chicago, also is not allowed to frequent an establishment whose primary purpose is the distribution of alcohol.

"He's going to do good on probation," said defense attorney Bob Ritacca of Waukegan. "It's just a sad story in his young life."

Prosecutors said in court that Mark Ditka was pulled over by police after he was seen weaving on Waukegan Road in Deerfield on Oct. 7, 2012.

Officers searched his vehicle and found a pill bottle containing hydrocodone, Assistant State's Attorney Ben Dillon said.

Mark Ditka was charged with multiple counts of aggravated DUI and possession of a controlled substance.

This is Mark Ditka's fourth alcohol-related arrest and his first conviction, Dillon said.

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