Savini pleads guilty to Naperville DUI; other charges dropped
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With his legal problems now behind him, CBS 2 Chicago investigative reporter Dave Savini said he's "looking forward to getting back" to work.
Savini pleaded guilty Tuesday to driving under the influence of alcohol in a plea deal that saw prosecutors drop the remaining misdemeanor charges, including battery, endangering the life of a child, and leaving the scene of a minor traffic accident.
Savini, who lives in Naperville, was arrested about 12:20 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 4, after a minor accident that took place in the parking lot of Taco Bell at 75th Street and Rickert Drive, Naperville.
Savini, 47, was accused of pushing the driver of the other vehicle when the man used his phone to photograph Savini's license plate. Police arrested Savini a short time later near Saratoga and Plainfield-Naperville roads. Two children younger than 18 were in the car, which led to the endangerment charge.
Savini's attorney, Terry Ekl, said after Tuesday's hearing that video from the scene led to the charges being dismissed.
"We subpoenaed all of the videotape from Taco Bell and all of the radio transmissions from that night. We did that because Dave did not batter anybody at Taco Bell. He didn't push anybody and he did not leave the scene of an accident without giving proper identification information and insurance information," Ekl said. "He got stopped and he rightly was arrested on charges of DUI because he had a blood alcohol content above the legal limit. He was not driving in a reckless fashion and he was not driving in a fashion that endangered his 14-year-old son and his friend in the car."
Ekl said Savini thought he was in for the night when his son and friend got hungry after a day of watching football.
Savini did not speak to reporters but handed out a printed statement outside of court.
"There's no doubt about it, I made a mistake and used bad judgment to drive after drinking. I take full responsibility and I apologize. I deeply regret it," Savinvi wrote. "My heartfelt thanks to my family, friends, colleagues and viewers who have supported me during this very difficult time. I look forward to get (sic) back to work and I will work hard to regain the trust of those who I may have let down."
For his punishment, Savini received one year of court supervision, fines of $1,700 plus mandatory court costs, 10 hours of counseling and 200 hours of community service work. He also has to participate in a victim impact panel and repair any damage deemed to have been done to the other driver's car.
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