Mitchell man headed to prison for huffing computer cleaner while drivingA 22-year-old Mitchell man with a lengthy criminal history is going to the penitentiary for huffing computer cleaner while operating a motor vehicle. Houston Red Day was sentenced to serve 18 months in the penitentiary and pay court costs of $104 Tuesday at the Davison County Public Safety Center in Mitchell.
By: Austin Kaus, The Daily Republic
A 22-year-old Mitchell man with a lengthy criminal history is going to the penitentiary for huffing computer cleaner while operating a motor vehicle.
Houston Red Day was sentenced to serve 18 months in the penitentiary and pay court costs of $104 Tuesday at the Davison County Public Safety Center in Mitchell.
Red Day was arrested in September after he struck a parked car with a 2002 Dodge Intrepid after passing out from huffing air duster, which is pressurized air used to clean electronic equipment. He was charged with third-offense driving under the influence, driving with a revoked driver’s license, ingesting an intoxicant other than an alcoholic beverage and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Only days before the arrest, Red Day was cited for indecent exposure after ordering a sandwich at a local restaurant, walking into the restroom and returning with his genitalia exposed.
Davison County Assistant State’s Attorney Bob O’Keefe said that although it was the first felony offense for Red Day, the Mitchell man has had at least 20 arrests since 2007, all of which have been related to drugs or alcohol.
O’Keefe said Red Day has also missed multiple 24/7 Sobriety program check-ins.
“I just don’t know how dedicated he is to changing,” O’Keefe said.
Red Day faced the sentencing without an attorney after Carl Koch began the sentencing hearing by requesting to no longer be Red Day’s attorney. Koch said he had an “ethical issue” but did not elaborate.
“I do not feel that I can meet the ethical requirements … to the best interest of Mr. Red Day,” Koch said at the beginning of the hearing.
At this, Red Day looked to Koch with surprise. Koch told the court he had not discussed the request with his client.
After O’Brien granted the request, Koch left the courtroom without making eye contact with Red Day.
Although Red Day was given the option to request a court-appointed attorney, he chose to move on alone.
“I’m troubled,” Red Day said with his voice shaking and his legs bouncing. “I know the consequences of my actions. I’m here today to accept it.”
O’Brien said someone convicted of a first felony offense would not normally be facing prison time. However, Red Day’s extensive record led O’Brien to issue a penitentiary sentence.
O’Keefe, Red Day and O’Brien all agreed that Red Day’s problems stemmed from alcohol and drug abuse.
“You do have an alcohol and drug problem that you’re just not able to get a handle on,” O’Brien said. “You’re just kind of going through life without any purpose or goals.”
Red Day will be eligible for parole in approximately four months.