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Connecticut trooper avoids jail in drunken driving case

MIDDLETOWN (AP) — A Connecticut state police sergeant charged with drunken driving after an off-duty 2019 crash that injured a woman and her 19-year-old daughter agreed to a plea deal Thursday that will allow him to avoid jail and have the charge erased if he completes the state's alcohol education program.

Sgt. John McDonald pleaded no contest to two counts of reckless endangerment and a judge approved his application for the program during a hearing in Middletown Superior Court, Hearst Connecticut Media reported.

McDonald must serve two years of probation, complete 100 hours of community service and attend at least one drunken driving victim impact panel. If he successfully completes the alcohol education program, the driving under the influence charge will be erased.

McDonald apologized during the hearing. He remains on administrative duty pending the completion of an internal affairs investigation.

Authorities said McDonald consumed at least eight alcoholic drinks during a retirement party in Oxford for a colleague before the crash in Southbury. He was driving more than 70 mph, ran a stop sign and crashed into another vehicle, injuring Lisa Conroy and her daughter Madison Conroy, who was then 19, officials said.

The Conroys are suing McDonald and the state over the crash.



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