ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Brandon Baldwin was charged with DWI for driving through a traffic closure and hitting a police officer during Balloon Fiesta a few years ago. Now, he will avoid further jail time.

Police claimed Baldwin sped passed two public service aides and drove through a traffic closure during 2021’s Balloon Fiesta. Another officer still could not stop him. After the incident, Baldwin was charged with DWI and three counts of aggravated battery. One of those charges was on a police officer.

The state said this plea deal was the best option; two of the officers who intended to serve as witnesses could not be reached because they had retired from the force.

Lisa Roybal, who works at the Second Judicial District Attorney’s Office, explained deadlines to find or add other witnesses had already passed by the time she took over the case, and since they couldn’t use the officers’ testimonies, the plea seemed ideal.

Attorneys on both sides argued that Baldwin has been compliant every step of the way and is not a high risk. Baldwin, himself, told the judge, “Your honor, I’ve been in contact with pretrial services. I call the Bernalillo UA hotline every single day, called this morning before I came in. I haven’t missed I think any of those.”

Baldwin pleaded guilty to aggravated DWI and one count of misdemeanor assault. As part of the plea deal, Baldwin was sentenced to time served, 24 hours of community service, and nine months’ probation. He will also have to install an interlock device on his car for a minimum of a year.

“This is a large opportunity for you to be able to move forward in a positive way and take advantage of the generous situation and plea from the state of New Mexico that the court is accepting. So, please, maintain your sobriety and comply with all the conditions of my probation orders, and you will do just fine,” said Judge Courtney B. Weaks of the Second Judicial District Court.