Skaug attends hearing for DUI charges

Adam Noorani Evergreen Reporter

ASWSU Vice President Derrick Skaug, who was arrested early Sunday morning for driving under the influence, may have had a blood alcohol level as high as .097, according to police reports.

Skaug appeared in his first hearing at the Whitman County Courthouse on Monday after a Whitman County Sheriff deputy arrested him Sunday for driving under the influence.

If found guilty of a DUI, Skaug could face a maximum sentence of 364 days in jail and a $5,000 penalty.

Skaug was arrested after being pulled over for taking a wide left turn onto Valley Road near Pullman Family Medicine, Whitman County Judge Douglas Robinson said at the hearing.

The arresting officer noted Skaug’s slurred speech, according to police reports presented at the hearing. When asked if he had been drinking, Skaug admitted to having a couple of beers. Skaug was then subjected to two field breathalyzer tests, both resulting in a .09 blood alcohol level, .01 points in excess of the .08 legal limit.

Later at the station, Skaug was administered two more tests, resulting in a .097 and .093, according to police reports.

Skaug’s pre-trial hearing is set for March 1. Until then, he is not allowed to possess or consume alcohol, and his driver’s license is subject to possible suspension. Skaug was exonerated of bail.

Scott Wonder, Skaug’s attorney who represented him by telephone, later said to The Daily Evergreen breathalyzer tests may not be accurate in measuring blood alcohol level. Wonder estimated a breathalyzer result of 0.09 blood alcohol level could be as low as 0.081.

Skaug had no comments for reporters after the hearing.

CORRECTION: The Daily Evergreen mischaracterized Skaug’s attorney Scott Wonder’s explanation of blood alcohol levels. Wonder was not speaking about Skaug’s case — he was speaking about breathalyzer tests in general.