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Former Michigan State University police captain pleads guilty to driving drunk

Valerie O’Brien sentenced to probation, must apologize to arresting officer

Video from the scene of a Michigan State University police captain being arrested for drunken driving.
Video from the scene of a Michigan State University police captain being arrested for drunken driving.

LANSING, Mich. – A former Michigan State University police captain pleaded guilty to driving drunk while she was a member of the department.

Officials said Valerie O’Brien was arrested in February after she pulled onto the shoulder of I-96 and a Michigan State Police trooper asked if she needed help.

MORE: Video shows Michigan State University police captain arrested for drunk driving

O’Brien failed a field sobriety test and refused a preliminary breath test, according to authorities. A blood test later showed she had a blood-alcohol content of 0.251, MSP reports.

Her police-issued pistol was in the back seat of her car at the time of the arrest, officials said.

“Those who vow to protect and serve must ensure they’re upholding that oath through their own conduct,” Attorney General Dana Nessel said.

O’Brien pleaded guilty to operating a motor vehicle with a high BAC and carrying a concealed pistol while under the influence with a BAC of 0.10 or higher. The first charge is a 180-day misdemeanor, and the second charge is a 93-day misdemeanor.

She was sentenced to one year of probation and must pay a $700 fine, pay $1,295 in fees and costs, complete 40 hours of community service by the end of the year, complete counseling and apologize to the arresting officer for her behavior, the judge said.

O’Brien isn’t allowed to consume drugs or alcohol without a prescription. She can’t leave the state without permission or possess a dangerous weapon.


About the Author:

Derick is a Senior Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.