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Former Buffalo Sabre Matthew Barnaby Pleads Guilty

12:09 PM, Dec 14, 2011   |    comments
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BUFFALO, NY (AP) -  Ex-NHL player Matthew Barnaby has plead guilty to drinking and driving, but will not face jail time.

The former Buffalo Sabre pleaded guilty to four charges: DWI, refusing a blood alcohol test, failing to notify the DMV of an address change, and driving with an unsafe tire.

Barnaby was pulled over December 4th after Erie County Sheriff's Deputies found him driving without a tire.

Barnaby appeared before a judge in the Town of Clarence Tuesday.  He was humble and apologetic as he told the judge, "I want to make sure I seek help so I don't end up here ever ever again."

Barnaby will not serve any jail time because this is his first alcohol offense.  His drivers license has been revoked for one year, and ignition interlock devices must be installed in all his cars.  He also paid nearly $2,000 in fines.

The judge indicated that Barnaby has already suffered because of his arrest; Barnaby was fired from his position of ESPN analyst after the charges were filed.

Additionally, Barnaby agreed to check in to an inpatient alcohol treatment center.  When he is released, he will be required to serve 100 hours of community service.  Specifically, he will be asked to speak to students in Clarence about the consequences of drinking and driving.

Prosecutors dropped one charge related to leaving the scene of an accident.  Even though Barnaby's car was missing a tire and had front-end damage, they felt there was not enough evidence to prove he either hit someone or caused damage.

Erie County Sheriff's deputies arrested Barnaby early December 4th after finding him behind the wheel of a Porsche Cayenne that had front end damage, was missing a front tire and was sparking as he drove on the rim. The sheriff's office says he failed field sobriety tests and refused a breath test.

Barnaby's arrest may jeopardize an agreement that allowed the 38-year-old from Ottawa to avoid potential deportation following a domestic-related arrest earlier this year.

Erie County District Attorney Frank Sedita has filed a motion to reinstate the domestic violence charge, but it could be withdrawn.

AP

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