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S.F. archbishop pleads guilty to reckless driving in DUI case

October 4, 2012 |  7:49 pm

ArchThe Roman Catholic archbishop of San Francisco, arrested on suspicion of drunk driving in San Diego in August, has pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of misdemeanor reckless driving, court records indicate.

An attorney for Salvatore Joseph Cordileone entered the plea Monday in San Diego County Superior Court. Cordileone was sentenced to three years probation, a $1,120 fine, and attendance at a panel discussion sponsored by Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

The penalty is consistent with the plea bargain given to other drivers arrested under similar circumstances, the city attorney's office said.

Cordileone, 56, had been set to be arraigned Oct. 9. He was installed as archbishop on Thursday amid ceremonial splendor in San Francisco at the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption.

A native of San Diego, he had been at dinner with his mother when he was stopped at a routine, late-night checkpoint near San Diego State University. He was booked into county jail. Within days he apologized for his actions and the embarrassment it caused the church.


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--Tony Perry in San Diego

Photo: Archbishop Salvatore Joseph Cordileone. Credit: Marcio Joseph Sanchez / Associated Press