A 50-year-old Billings man with seven other DUI convictions pleaded not guilty Friday in District Court to a felony DUI charge and two related misdemeanors.
Thomas Darold Hamell, who remains jailed under $10,000 bond, was charged with DUI and misdemeanor counts of driving without insurance and without a valid license.
He was arrested on March 15 after a police officer came upon an unattended pickup truck parked on the shoulder with its hazard lights on near Laurel Road and King Avenue West about 8:30 a.m.
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After learning that the truck was registered to Hamell, for whom there was an active arrest warrant, the officer said he watched as Hamell returned to the truck and drove off. He was arrested a short time later.
A breath test showed Hamell had a blood-alcohol level of 0.275 percent, more than three times the legal limit of 0.08. Prosecutors say Hamell has seven previous DUI convictions between 1983 and 2004, in addition to felony convictions for thefts and assault on a peace officer.