By Molly Miron
Folstrom, 35, of Bemidji, pleaded guilty Wednesday, March 31, in Beltrami County District Court before Judge John Melbye to gross misdemeanor third-degree DWI--refusal to submit to chemical test.
In an interview last week concerning the upcoming publication of her book, “Phoenix,” in which she recounts her battles with depression and other life challenges, Folstrom said “even though I rose from the ashes, I definitely had a dark period in my life, about two years ago.”
Folstrom said some of her problems arose after she ran unsuccessfully for state Senate in 2006 and mayor of Bemidji in 2008.
Her attorney Jason Pederson told me today that Folstrom was sentenced to the three days she spent in jail this week, with additional time stayed, unless she has another related brush with the law.
"Ms. Folstrom is going through an emotionally taxing time in her life, but basically she admitted fault immediately, admitted responsibility immediately, and was very up front with [Beltrami County District Court Judge John Melbye]. It was an isolated incident," said Pederson, "as was pointed out on the record. She's got a clear record. She doesn't have any prior DWIs, alcohol-related offenses. It's something Irene takes seriously."
Asked about the "emotionally taxing time" to which he was referring, Pederson said Folstrom's "divorce has been tough for her. She'll be the first to admit that. She has two kids and the divorce has been difficult for her."
Folstrom's claim that even an innocuous photo is "private" while she's going on TV to talk about Woods and (not coincidentally) her book is suspicious. If I were a TV producer, I'd demand proof before giving her more publicity.
For more on the subject, see Tiger's Ojibwe Girlfriend.