Lakeville School District employee pleads guilty to DWI
Lakeville North athletic director given two years probation
Robert Lorenz Ertl, 47, of Northfield, received a stayed one-year jail sentence, but will serve 10 days of electronic home monitoring, perform 240 hours of community service and pay $615 in fees and fines under sentencing from Dakota County Judge Mary Theisen.
Ertl also was required to complete chemical evaluation and will be under to supervised probation for two years.
Linda Swanson, Lakeville Area Public Schools communications director, said Ertl told Superintendent Dr. Lisa Snyder, Executive Director of Administrative Services Mr. Tony Massaros, and Lakeville North High School Principal Marne Berkvam about the incident during the second week of June.
According to Lakeville police, an officer reported passing Babe’s Sports Bar three times in an hour and seeing a man sitting in a green Jeep in the front parking lot each time.
The officer then spotted the Jeep being driven very slowly onto 206th Street, then parking near the dead-end with its lights turned off.
Soon, the vehicle’s interior lights were turned on, and the officer parked behind the Jeep, shined his spotlight toward it and asked the driver, later identified as Ertl, what he was doing.
Ertl allegedly told the officer, “I stopped to make a phone call because I don’t think I should be driving,” according to the Lakeville police incident report. The officer reported Ertl said he had consumed a few drinks at Babe’s Sports Bar.
The officer also reported Ertl smelled like alcohol, swayed when he walked, had bloodshot eyes and failed some of the field sobriety tests, including walking off the line and turning the opposite direction during a heel-to-toe walk.
Ertl was arrested and processed at the Lakeville police station.
A written statement from the district said Ertl has been forthright in describing the incident and is taking steps to address the issue.
“During the past seven months he has demonstrated his commitment to positively resolving this matter,” the statement said.
In the statement, Ertl said he “is taking action to get his life in order.”
“I entered treatment seven months ago and have been sober since,” he said. “I informed my supervisors about the issues when I began treatment and I am sorry and apologize to the district and the community for the negative impact this may have on our district.“
In an interview, Swanson said Ertl “is doing the things he needs to do to maintain his job.”
Ertl started with Lakeville schools in 1993 and was named activities director in August, 2010 after serving in 2009 as interim activities director.
According to court records, Ertl was also charged with a DWI in 2008.
Under a plea agreement also heard before Judge Theisen, the DWI was dropped and he plead guilty to careless driving. Ertl paid $619 in fees and fines, served 40 hours of community service and was on supervised probation for a year.