Former Hennepin County Commissioner Mike Opat pleaded guilty Wednesday to drunken driving and was sentenced to two years of probation along with a suspended jail sentence as part of the plea agreement, court records show.
The 61-year-old Democrat was jailed the night of Oct. 5 in Dayton and charged with driving under the influence in connection with a traffic stop. Opat was first elected to the Hennepin County Board in 1992; he did not seek reelection in 2020.
According to the charges, Opat "failed to make a full and complete stop" at a stop sign at N. 113th Avenue and Fernbrook Lane, leading an officer to pull him over.
The criminal complaint said the officer who stopped Opat gave him a preliminary breath test, which measured his blood alcohol content at 0.093%, above the legal limit of .08% for driving in Minnesota.
As part of the agreement, Opat pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor, fourth-degree DWI. His 30-day jail sentence is stayed unless he violates the other conditions of his sentence.
Other terms of the sentence include:
- $378 in fines.
- Two days of work for Minnesota's "Sentencing to Service" program, a sentencing alternative that puts "carefully selected, nonviolent offenders to work on community improvement projects" according to the program website.
- A one-day DWI program and a chemical dependency evaluation.
- Attend a victim impact panel from Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
- Maintain a valid license and insurance.
- Must not commit a similar offense.
- Cannot drive without insurance.
Opat's attorney, Paul Applebaum, has not responded to requests for comment.
Staff writer Kyeland Jackson contributed to this report.