Nancy C. Irsay pleaded guilty today to reckless driving in connection with a July 2003 incident in which police said she was driving 70 mph in a 30-mph zone.
In exchange for the plea, prosecutors dropped drunken driving charges against the widow of Indianapolis Colts owner Robert Irsay.
Irsay was pulled over in her Porsche Carrera GT near 38th and Illinois streets. Police said the car went airborne through the intersection. The Hamilton County resident was arrested after she refused to take blood-alcohol and field sobriety tests.
Marion Superior Court Judge Linda Brown sentenced Irsay to 180 days in jail, but suspended 178 and gave Irsay credit for time she spent in jail after the incident. Irsay also was fined $1,000 plus court costs and ordered to attend defensive driving school.
I don't handle drunken driving cases in my practice, but I've talked to plenty of attorneys who do handles these cases. They tell me it's like pulling teeth to convince the prosecutor's office to reduce charges in a drunken driving case. Absent police error in gathering evidence, defense attorneys typically have to be prepared to fight these cases in front of a jury if their client wants to beat the rap. That's not going to be the case for Irsay.