Dustin Byfuglien is off the hook. The Jets’ defenseman had his impaired boating charge dropped today in a Minneapolis court, pleading guilty to the misdemeanor of careless boating (for not having proper lighting on the vessel).
Winnipeg Free Press reporter Mike McIntyre has all the details on Twitter.
Most notably, Byfuglien gets a $1,000 fine and 30-day sentence, with 28 days suspended. The remaining two days will be spent as a “workhorse,” which could mean he’ll be picking up garbage along the side of a highway at some point. (Or perhaps plowing a field?)
Byfuglien’s agent says the sentence will have no impact on his career.
The 27-year-old was facing up to a year in jail after his Aug. 31 arrest on Lake Minnetonka. Even though Byfuglien passed a preliminary breath test that day, a “distinct brown stain on his tongue” led officers to suspect he was “under the influence of a controlled substance and was unable to safely operate a watercraft.”
Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff released a statement after the case was settled.
“After allowing the legal process to play out, we are thankful to see this matter resolved to the satisfaction of all parties involved,” said Cheveldayoff. “As an organization, the Winnipeg Jets are happy this is behind Dustin and he can look forward to the upcoming hockey season, along with the rest of the team and their passionate fan base.”
PS – Courtesy Peter Chura of Global TV Winnipeg, here’s a picture of Byfuglien arriving in court.