Ex-city council aide gets jail in DUI

Posted: April 02, 2013

A former Philadelphia City Council sergeant-at-arms was sentenced today to the mandatory minimum 72-hour prison term for his conviction on drunk-driving while improperly using a city-owned car.

In addition to the prison term, Rodney Williams, 42, was fined $1,000, had his driver's license suspended for a year and was ordered to attend driver-safety and alcohol abuse classes, according to Assistant District Attorney Elizabeth Kotchian.

Kotchian said Municipal Court Judge Gerard A. Kosinski let Williams begin his sentence on April 26.

Williams said nothing before sentencing and his defense attorney Robin Colley Pitt declined comment.

The charges against Williams, a City Council employee since 2004, began with a Sept. 8 crash of a city-owned car by another council employee, Robin Jones.

Jones, 50, crashed the car she was driving at 2:30 a.m. at 13th and Hamilton Streets in lower North Philadelphia.

Jones, a 14-year city employee who was a receptionist in the office of Council President Darrell L. Clarke, called Williams for help and he was arrested when he arrived in another city vehicle.

According to Kotchian, Williams showed police his council identification badge and, when officers asked if he had been drinking, said, "Hey, it's Friday night."

Jones pleaded guilty in February to charges she was intoxicated on alcohol and cocaine when she was driving. She was supposed to have been sentenced March 14 but showed up two hours late. Her sentencing has been rescheduled for April 18.

Both Jones and Williams were fired from their City Council jobs for being arrested for driving under the influence and driving city-owned "pool cars" available only to Council members and certain staffers.

Contact Joseph A. Slobodzian at 215-854-2985, jslobodzian@phillynews.com, or @joeslobo on Twitter.

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