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Longtime broadcaster pleads guilty to felony DUI

CARLSBAD — A former Pittsburgh news anchor pleaded guilty Dec. 1 to his fourth drunken-driving arrest within the last 10 years.
At a readiness conference in a Vista courtroom, Don Cannon, whose real name is Donald J. Clark, admitted to a felony DUI stemming from a May 17 arrest in Carlsbad, where he lived since moving to the West Coast in 2008.
Police arrested Clark, 69, on Nov. 17 for two outstanding bench warrants relating to two DUI convictions out of Allegheny County. Earlier that day Clark, a staple in Pittsburgh broadcasting since 1969, had pleaded guilty to a March 29 misdemeanor DUI arrest near his home in Carlsbad.
In both California DUI arrests, police said Clark’s blood-alcohol level was more than .30. California’s legal limit is .08.
Under California law, a fourth DUI arrest within 10 years constitutes a felony, and carries a maximum sentence of three years in prison.
Clark’s sentencing date was set for Jan. 15 in a Vista courtroom.
On Dec. 18, Clark is scheduled to appear in a Pittsburgh courtroom for a hearing relating to his sentence for the two Pennsylvania DUI convictions. Authorities allege Clark didn’t comply with his sentence of 93 days of house arrest, which was why the bench warrants were issued.
Clark remains out of custody on bail.
In August, he checked into US in Recovery, a residential treatment facility in San Marcos.
In a letter to the judge, Director Becky Allison said Clark has committed to a nine-month stay at the center, and since his check-in has passed the random alcohol tests the facility has given him.
“Donald is a joy to be around and watch grow in the recovery process,” Allison said. “I believe Donald is making his way back into society and is alcohol free.”

1 comment

amanda christianson December 17, 2009 at 7:55 pm

i wish him the best! becky allison’s place is not really a treatment center though…more like a party place…so what’s up with that?

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