Alameda Prosecutor Arrested for 5th DUI

A former Alameda County senior deputy district attorney who has been convicted four times for drunken driving was arrested again early yesterday in Berkeley after police found him inside his car on top of a street median, authorities said.

Attorney Darryl Billups, 48, who has a private practice in San Pablo, was taken into custody about 2:50 a.m. after failing a field sobriety test in the 1300 block of San Pablo Avenue, said Captain Bill Cooper of the University of California at Berkeley police.

Billups was booked at Berkeley City Jail on $31,000 bail on suspicion of felony drunken driving and driving with a revoked license.

Campus police officer Tina Johnson was patrolling a nearby UC housing complex when she spotted Billups’ green 1996 Toyota Avalon lying at an angle on top of the median on San Pablo Avenue near Gilman Street, Cooper said.

Billups “appeared to be incoherent and didn’t seem to be paying attention” to the officer, Cooper said.

A subsequent breath test put Billups’ blood-alcohol level at .22 percent, nearly three times the legal limit of .08 percent, police said.

According to Department of Motor Vehicle records, Billups has been convicted of drunken driving four times since 1991. His license was revoked in February 1995.

Drunken driving, usually charged as a misdemeanor, becomes a felony on the fourth conviction. Billups was placed on court-ordered probation for his three most recent convictions.

Billups joined the Alameda County district attorney’s office in 1976, serving in municipal court, juvenile, trial and career criminal court positions before being promoted to senior deputy district attorney in 1989.

He resigned in 1995, said Rich Michaels, chief assistant in the district attorney’s office. Michaels said he could not discuss the details of Billups’ resignation.

Billups could not be reached for comment.

Henry K. Lee, Chronicle Staff Writer

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