Pittsfield man gets 9 months for driving drunk with daughter in car


PITTSFIELD -- A repeat drunk driver was sentenced to nine months in jail on Friday -- a day after he was caught driving drunk with his 9-year-old daughter in the car.

Adam J. Alfonso, 41, of Boylston Street, was pulled over by a Massachusetts state trooper about 7 p.m. Thursday on North Pearl Street in Pittsfield for having a burned out brake light, according to police and prosecutors. Police said he had his young daughter in the car at the time and was heading to pick up his son.

He was arrested after failing field sobriety tests, police said. He head a breath alcohol content 0.12; the legal limit is 0.08.

He was charged with third offense drunken driving, child endangerment, driving with a suspended license, having no inspection sticker and an equipment violation.

The child was picked up by a family friend and returned to her mother, said police.

The trooper noted that Alfonso was "extremely polite and cooperative" during the stop and arrest.

According to court documents, Alfonso was previously convicted of drunken driving in 1991 and 2002.

Alfonso appeared in Central Berkshire District Court on Friday before Judge Paul M. Vrabel and pleaded guilty to second offense drunken driving and child endangerment. The other charges were dismissed.

The Berkshire District Attorney's Office amended the drunken driving charge from a third offense to a second offense. Prosecutor Andrew Giarolo told the court this was done because Alfonso had agreed to change his plea so quickly after being arrested and "in the best interests of justice."

According to his lawyer Jessica Byrne, one of Alfonso's reasons for agreeing to a change of plea had to do with his seasonal employment status. He hoped to get out of jail and get back to work in order to pay his child support as quickly as possible, the attorney told the court.

Byrne asked the court to sentence her client to a total of six months in jail. The DA's Office was asking for a total of nine months.

Vrabel sentenced Alfonso to a total of nine months in jail at the Berkshire County Jail & House of Correction in line with the prosecution's sentencing request

He also ordered that the defendant be allowed to attend an in-house alcohol treatment program while in jail.

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