Minnesota's worst drunk-driver is back behind bars

Danny Lee Bettcher has been convicted of his 28th DWI.

What's happening?

Danny Lee Bettcher, Minnesota's most prolific drunk-driver, is serving a prison sentence after being convicted of his 28th DWI.

His 28th?!

Yep – and that's just his 28th known offense as well. Records of his infractions only go back to 1980, so it's possible he had more before then.

KSTP reports that his latest DWI came after the 65 year old from Fergus Falls refused to submit a breath test after being pulled over in New York Mills in October.

He'll likely spend the next two years in prison, having been sentenced to a four-and-a-half year term for felony DWI, of which 131 days is time served.


– Man's hit-and-run death makes mockery of MN's DWI laws

Thank goodness he's off our roads then?

Sure, for now – but there's every chance he could eventually be allowed to drive in Minnesota again.

Wait, what?

We went over this when Bettcher was first charged – Minnesota's DWI laws are such that even despite 27 DWIs and even felony convictions, he will eventually be allowed to get his license back.

Bettcher was legally allowed to drive when he was arrested in October, and under the guidelines below it looks like the longest he'll have his license canceled this time around will be six years.

All Bettcher will have to do to get it back is complete the following requirements.

• Follow recommendations in a chemical use assessment.

• Successfully complete chemical dependency treatment.

• Meeting other requirements such as having insurance, paying fees, passing knowledge and DWI tests, etc.

Bettcher's most recent license carried a "no alcohol/drugs" restriction on it, meaning that it could be canceled if he's found to be impaired by alcohol or drugs during the commission of ANY offense, not just driving violations.

Next Up

court gavel

St. Cloud man sentenced after traveling to meet minor he solicited online

Nathan Paul Grondahl learned his fate in a federal court this week.

Kirill Kaprizov / Minnesota Wild

Report: Contract talks between Kaprizov and Wild have 'gone cold'

The report states Kaprizov is drawing interest from the KHL.


Glensheen Mansion reveals new coffee bar - with fresh donuts

It's located in the historic Carriage House garage space

Bogdan Vechirko

Charges against trucker who barreled through protestors could be dropped

Bogdan Vechirko will have to avoid legal trouble for a year.

Dychaun Chew - South High School Facebook

Loved ones mourn 16-year-old killed in Minneapolis hit-and-run

South High School held a balloon release for Dychaun Chew Thursday evening.

police lights

5-year-old dies 3 weeks after assault, mother's charges upped to murder

The girl died three weeks after the assault took place.


How does a guy with 27 DWIs still have a driver's license?

Minnesotan Danny Bettcher was just charged with his 28th known DWI offense.

There were some monumentally stupid drunk drivers in Minnesota over the holidays

The number of holiday season DWI arrests jumped by 10 percent.

danny lee bettcher

Minnesota man who had 28 DWIs dies weeks after leaving prison

Danny Lee Bettcher is considered the most prolific drunken driver in Minnesota history.

MN woman, 'one of worst DUI offenders in the U.S.,' arrested in Illinois

The 41 year old from New Hope has drunk-driving convictions in 6 states.

Bus driver was over the limit with 58 students on board

The 39 year old is facing four DWI charges.

Drunk driver with 27 offenses exits prison

Danny Bettcher, 59, is well known in a pocket of central Minnesota as the man who has racked up 27 drunk driving offenses, believed to be the most in the state, the Fargo Forum reports. On Friday, he's being released after more than three years in prison, but for some he remains a symbol of the state's inability to prevent repeat drunken drivers from climbing behind the wheel.

Chief furious as one of Minnesota's worst DWI offenders gets probation

The mother-of-11 was found passed out at the wheel in Illinois in April.