HAVERHILL (CBS/AP) – Matt Amorello, the former head of the Big Dig, has admitted to driving drunk in an August accident.

In a hearing in Haverhill District Court Tuesday, a judge ordered Amorello to give up his driver’s license for 45 days and pay up to $1,300 in fines. He must also enter an alcohol treatment program.

The judge ordered charges of drunken driving and leaving the scene of an accident continued without a finding.

Matt Amorello's mug shot in the police report after the accident.

It was not a plea deal and Amorello did not plead guilty to any charges.

He “admitted to sufficient facts,” which means he agreed with the police report and the case is continued without a finding for a year.

If he stays out of trouble, the case will be dismissed on November 30, 2011.

Amorello was arrested in August after his Ford Explorer struck two parked cars on a street in Haverhill. Police said he continued to drive it even though a wheel had fallen off.  The SUV was later found at a car dealership with Amorello alone inside.

After his appearance in court Tuesday, Amorello said he regretted his actions.

“I made a terrible mistake, and I’ll pay the consequences for that mistake,” he told reporters.

WBZ-TV’s Sera Congi Reports

Amorello, a former state senator, was appointed in 2002 to lead the Turnpike Authority, which oversaw the $15 billion Big Dig highway project.

He resigned under pressure from then-Gov. Mitt Romney in 2006 after a Big Dig tunnel ceiling collapse killed a woman.

(TM and © Copyright 2010 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (3)
  1. sullyinma says:

    Once again money and position of authority have gotten a criminal free from the justice system. This idiot was stinkin’ drunk, crashed into two parked cars, then tried to hide in a dealership parking lot and all he gets is a 45 day loss of license and up to $1300 in fines. Then after a year the coase is dismissed tnat there is no record of DWI.

    The police did everything right in this case. He blew a breathalyzer test well over the legal limit. What more can the police do.

    God forbid that he had killed someone, he probably would’ve pleaded that “he didn’t mean to”, and the judge would’ve allowed that also.

  2. Jeff Kingston says:

    Another of the greasy, slimy, dirt-ball politicians in Massachusetts along with the totally inept courts that are so swayed by $$$ and sleazy politics, we should put them out of business. The courts in this state have no more interest in the law than the Pope has in converting to Judaism. Totally disgusted.

  3. Cynic says:

    Alcohol doesn’t care who you are.At any Given time 10-15% of School Teachers,Doctors,Bus Drivers,Judges,Politicians,Priests,Nurses,Firemen.Police,Cab Drivers,You name it ,Has a problem with Booze..No one is immune.For most people whether someone smokes of not is the major concern.WBZ even runs a Puff Piece on the Wonderful World Of TOP SHELF BARS today.Hopefully this will be a wake up call for Mr.Amorello and he is able to break the Cycle and get his life together. I hope so.

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