Michael Fletcher, 44, of West Bloomfield pleaded no contest Thursday, Dec. 12, 2019, to drunk driving. (Photo: Photo: Susan Vela | hometownlife.com)
A Lakeland High School teacher has “absolutely” agreed that sobriety court is the best recourse for his drinking problems.
Michael Fletcher, 44, of West Bloomfield pleaded no contest – essentially, presenting no arguments – to accusations of operating a motor vehicle with a high blood-alcohol content.
Upon agreeing to the no-contest plea, Oakland County 52-2 District Court Judge Kelley Kostin scolded the state-certified teacher of nearly 20 years.
“Based on what I read, you are a long-term alcoholic,” said Kostin, speaking in her Clarkston courtroom. “I saw so many excuses from you. Until there’s some accountability, you’re not going to get better.
“What I see here is a man who is trying to fool himself. Nobody else around you believes it anymore. You need to recognize that.”
She said he’s an ideal candidate for her sobriety court program where he would receive intensive therapy for a drinking problem that goes farther back than he lets on.
She added that it’s obvious he has three choices: stay sober, go to prison or early death.
“What’s your choice, Mr. Fletcher?” she asked “Are you ready to work?”
“Absolutely,” the teacher said.
Fletcher is scheduled for a Jan. 22 sentencing on two drunken driving incidents in the past two years. He has pleaded guilty to operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated and operating a motor vehicle without having a valid operator’s license in October 2018.
Leading to the no-contest plea, prosecutors charged Fletcher with having an illegal blood-alcohol content of .17% or more and driving with a suspended license after a school resource officer’s September investigation resulted in Fletcher admitting to consuming alcohol prior to driving to Lakeland High School.
A test registered his blood alcohol content as .354%,or more than four times the legal .08% limit.
Huron Valley Schools’ officials have said Fletcher cannot return to campus until his legal issues are resolved to their satisfaction. https://www.hometownlife.com/story/news/local/south-lyon/2019/12/12/lakeland-high-teacher-pleads-no-contest-to-drunken-driving-charge/4403433002/