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Judge rejects plea offer, wants longer sentence for Albion man with 6th DWI

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 19 July 2019 at 4:12 pm

ALBION – Christopher Aldrich, 49, of Albion was to be sentenced in Orleans County Court on Thursday, and faced a maximum of 1 to 3 years in state prison as part of a plea agreement for felony driving while intoxicated and aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle.

Judge Sanford Church, however, said he couldn’t agree to the plea because he said Aldrich hasn’t accepted responsibility for the crime and has six prior DWIs.

Church wanted to sentence Aldrich to 2 to 6 years in prison, but the plea deal capped the sentence at 1 to 3 years.

The judge said he reviewed Aldrich’s presentencing report from probation, and Church said he was concerned for the community that Aldrich would be threat with another possible DWI.

Aldrich could now be on trial beginning Sept. 25, or a revised plea agreement could be worked out with a longer sentence than 1 to 3 years.

Aldrich, in court on Thursday, apologized for the crimes. He said he hasn’t been in treatment for his alcohol addiction.

“It just keeps repeating back to the same thing,” Aldrich said in court. “I really need some help.”

Aldrich pleaded guilty on May 16 to felony DWI and AUO of a motor vehicle. He was charged on Jan. 25, when he said he drank about a dozen beers before driving. He registered a BAC of 0.21 percent.

His attorney, public defender Joanne Best, asked in court on Thursday that Aldrich be sentenced to the Orleans County Jail where he could receive treatment through GCASA.

Church said Aldrich has had plenty of opportunities for help and to change through probation.

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