A Billings man accused of falling asleep in a van as it was being worked on at a downtown business was charged Tuesday with what prosecutors said is his eighth drunken-driving offense.
Mark Edward Brown, 56, appeared for arraignment before District Judge Russell Fagg and pleaded not guilty to felony DUI. Fagg set bond at $10,000 after a prosecutor said Brown has seven prior DUI convictions. The prosecutor said Brown completed the sentence on his most recent conviction the day before his arrest on the new charge.
Brown was arrested Nov. 19 after officers were called to the Master Lube on Fourth Avenue North to check on a man who was passed out in a vehicle in a service bay. Witnesses said Brown drove a van into the service bay, drank beer as he spoke to an employee and then fell asleep inside the van as it was being serviced.
When questioned by an officer, Brown stated that he had been "drinking all day," court records state. He denied driving the van, and said he was waiting for a friend to return to the vehicle so they could leave.
Brown declined to provide a breath sample.