HomeCrimeJudge's Future Unclear after Guilty Plea for Drunk Driving

Judge’s Future Unclear after Guilty Plea for Drunk Driving

G Tony Atwal
Courtesy of the Ramsey County Sheriff’s Office

An Indian American judge in Minnesota has pleaded guilty to drunk driving following his arrest on New Year’s Day, reported the Twin Cities Pioneer Press.

“I can’t express in words the remorse I feel,” said G. Tony Atwal. “I’m humbled and shamed by what happened.”

The Star Tribune reports Atwal registered an alcohol level of .17 percent, twice the legal limit, two hours after his arrest.

Atwal pleaded guilty to gross misdemeanor third-degree driving while impaired, but charges of misdemeanor careless driving and failing to stop at a stop sign were dismissed as part of the plea.

The judge will serve a 20 day sentence of home detention and two years supervised probation.

His future as a judge is unclear.

“It is not yet certain when Judge Atwal will return to the bench,” said Beau Berentson, Minnesota Judicial Branch spokesman. “Judge Atwal’s courtroom assignments for the remainder of this week have been assigned to other judges.”

This is his second offense. According to the Pioneer Press, he also pleaded guilty to DWI in 2007.

“Judge Atwal is humbled and remorseful for his poor decision,” said his Patrick Cotter. “He accepts full responsibility for this mistake and he accepts the consequences.”
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