Record: St. Joseph Co. prosecutor was over limit after crash

Southwest Michigan

St. Joseph County Prosecutor John McDonough. (2015 file)

THREE RIVERS, Mich. (WOOD) — St. Joseph County Prosecutor John McDonough’s blood alcohol content level was above the legal limit for driving when he was arrested earlier this week, records show.

A portable breath test registered McDonough’s BAC at .107, according to dispatch logs obtained by News 8 through a Freedom of Information Act request. The limit in Michigan is .08.

McDonough was arrested Monday night after crashing his SUV into a fence near Three Rivers. No one was hurt. He called 911 after the crash, the fence’s owner told News 8.

In that call, according to recordings included in the FOIA, he told dispatchers he “had a coughing fit” and “ran over a fence.” He said he was fine but the fence was damaged and asked for a wrecker. In a second call, he said he had freed the car from the fence. A dispatcher told him to wait for officers to arrive.

In between the calls, a neighbor also called 911. The dispatcher asked if McDonough appeared to be drunk and the caller said he couldn’t tell because he wasn’t close enough.

A courtesy photo taken after a Lockport Township crash allegedly involving St. Joseph County Prosecutor John McDonough.
A courtesy photo taken after a Lockport Township crash allegedly involving St. Joseph County Prosecutor John McDonough.

McDonough faces charges of operating while intoxicated and having open intoxicants in his car. Arraignment is scheduled for May 21.

McDonough, 40, has been the prosecutor in St. Joseph County for more than a decade and is up for reelection this fall.

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