A Mount Airy man convicted last year of drunken driving while on a horse dropped his appeal yesterday in Carroll County Circuit Court.
William B. Bell, 38, was convicted in October in District Court and received a 30-day suspended sentence and three years probation. He had pleaded not guilty, but Judge Marc G. Rasinsky found him guilty.
Bell appealed the conviction to Circuit Court.
William Purpura, a Baltimore attorney who represented Bell in the appeal, said his client thought he could drink and ride a horse, but doing so was a violation of the motor vehicle law.
"The laws govern vehicles as well as horses, horse-drawn carriages and lawn mowers on a public road," Purpura said. "Rather than risk a less favorable verdict -- he won't get any points on his driving record -- he decided to drop the appeal."
State police said Bell was riding west on a horse in the eastbound lane of Flag Marsh Road and was nearly struck by a van on Aug. 16, according to charging documents.
Tfc. W. R. Herman Jr. said Bell dismounted when asked to, but his breath smelled of alcohol. He failed four of five sobriety tests, including walking in a circle while performing the nine-step heel-to-toe walk and turn test.
Bell was arrested and refused to take a Breathalyzer test to determine his blood-alcohol content.
Pub Date: 4/02/98