DECORAH, Iowa --- A Secret Service agent in Decorah ahead of President Obama's visit last year was sentenced to two days in jail with credit for time served for drunken driving.

Daniel Valencia, 40, of Washington, D.C., learned his punishment Friday in Winneshiek County District Court. He initially pleaded not guilty to operating a vehicle while intoxicated but later entered an Alford plea.

Under an Alford plea, a defendant does not admit guilt but concedes sufficient evidence probably exits for a conviction.

Decorah police arrested Valencia about 1:30 a.m. Aug. 13. The president was in Decorah two days later as part of a bus trip through the Midwest.

Valencia can fulfill the sentence by completing an OWI weekend program in Iowa, which includes an offender's drinking drivers course required by the Iowa Department of Transportation. He must also pay a $1,250 fine and surcharge of $437.

The court will waive half of those costs, though, if Valencia presents a temporary restricted license to the clerk of court within 30 days. He must pay other fees, charges and court costs, however.

According to an affidavit, Valencia was off duty and ran a red light in downtown Decorah. Once stopped, a police officer noted a "strong odor" of alcohol on Valencia's breath and bloodshot and watery eyes.

Asked if he had been drinking, Valencia allegedly said he had consumed two drinks.

The officer completed a field sobriety test and found Valencia showed signs of impairment. Valencia refused a preliminary breath test, was arrested and taken to the Winneshiek County Jail.

(3) comments


I'll bet he don't lose his drivers license or get a traffic record like J.Q. Citizen would. Hats off to the officer who did not give him a pass.


No he just had his security clearance suspended which is ten times as bad as losing a drivers license, now he can't work with the agency. Definitely punishment enough.


Not enough of a punishment I must say!!!!! They hold a higher responsibility than most!!!!! That was completely irresponsible...

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