Beth McDonough, 40, crime reporter for KMSP FOX 9 News in Minneapolis was arrested early Saturday morning in Minnetonka for probable cause second degree drunken driving. Her second arrest in 15 months, McDonough was already serving a four year probation sentence for gross misdemeanor drunken driving in August 2007.
McDonough hit another car on Interstate 392 near Highway 169 shortly before 1:00 a.m. on November 1, 2008. Officers caught up with McDonough a short time later and noticed a strong odor of alcohol. According to Minnesota State Patrol spokesman Mark Peterson, she was given a field sobriety test as well as an Intoxilyzer test before being booked in Hennepin County. McDonough posted $1,200 against a $12,000 bond at the time of her release on Saturday afternoon.
The crime reporter's alcohol concentration was .24 which is three time the legal limit of .08. She was officially charged on Tuesday, November 4, with two counts of 2nd degree driving while intoxicated, one count of leaving the scene of an accident and careless driving.
McDonough joined FOX 9 in January 2005. Prior to that she was with WCAU-TV, an NBC affiliate in Philadelphia. She attended the University of Central Oklahoma where she earned a BA in Communications with a minor in Political Science.
KMSP-TV news director Bill Dallman initially reported that the station was checking into the matter. KMSP website now reports that their crime reporter has been suspended while they continue to make a determination on her future employment.
UPDATE 11/11/08: Star Tribune in Minneapolis is reporting that McDonough's e-mail account has now been removed, she is undergoing rehab at an undisclosed location and will not be returning to her crime reporter duties. According to the story, colleagues from her previous job in Philadelphia indicate that she had several alcohol related brushes with the law during her tenure at NBC10. She apparently was dating a Delaware State Trooper at that time and had a few close calls with arrests.
UPDATE 1/14/09: FOX 9 reports that McDonough was sentenced yesterday to 30 days house arrest and 3 years probation. She has been terminated from FOX 9.
This is the second Twin Cities media celebrity to be arrested in recent weeks. Popular KFAN radio co-host Jeff Dubay was fired after an arrest for drug possession and operating without a drivers license. Check out that story here.
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