February 6, 2016

Racine County prosecutor admits to driving drunk

Racine County’s chief prosecutor will lose his driver’s license for a year, after pleading guilty to driving drunk.

Racine Police said District Attorney Rich Chiapete struck a traffic signal and a tree last Friday night, then went to his home nearby. When police knocked on his door, he said he had been sleeping.

Chiapete’s attorney said Thursday that the D.A. wanted to take responsibility for his actions, so he agreed to plead guilty to municipal charges of OWI and hit-and-run, plus a new count of obstructing an officer. Chiapete agreed to pay just over $1,200 by mid-June, and have his driver’s license revoked for a year. When it’s restored, the DA can only drive vehicles with an interlock sobriety device for the next year.

A judge must still approve the plea agreement.

Chiapete has repeatedly apologized, but said he will not resign, and instead work hard to regain the public’s trust.


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