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    Sambora Cops Plea in Drunken-Driving Case

    Richie Sambora, Mugshot

    Richie Sambora is livin' on a plea.

    Just hours after prosecutors in the O.C. slapped a pair of drunken-driving charges on the Bon Jovi guitarist, E! News has exclusively learned that Sambora has made a plea deal in the case.

    The Lost Highway rocker pleaded no contest to a count of driving with a blood-alcohol level of 0.08 or higher. Because the charge was a misdemeanor, Sambora was not required to attend the hearing at Harbor Justice Center in Newport Beach. Instead, the plea was entered via his attorney, Blair Berk.

    A second count of driving under the influence of alcohol was dismissed.

    Judge Craig Robison sentenced Sambora to three years' informal probation. Sambora was also ordered to attend three months of alcohol-offender classes and pay court fees and restitution of about $1,600. He must also avoid drugs and alcohol during his probation.

    The punishment is the routine sentence for first-time offenders, according to Orange County District Attorney spokeswoman Farrah Emami.

    If convicted on both counts, Sambora could have faced up to six months in lockup.

    Police pulled over Sambora at about 10:52 p.m. on March 25 after spotting his Hummer H2 straddling two lanes on the Pacific Coast Highway in Laguna Beach.

    After flubbing several field sobriety tests, the axman was taken into custody and given a blood test in lieu of a Breathalyzer. Authorities declined to disclose the results of his blood-alcohol content.

    One count on which Sambora wasn't rung up: child endangerment. Police had recommended the charge because Sambora was driving with his and Heather Locklear's 10-year-old daughter, Ava, and another minor in the vehicle. The D.A., however, declined.

    Sambora is currently on the road with Bon Jovi. The New Jersey natives are scheduled to play a show later tonight in Kansas City, Mo.

    —Additional reporting by Claudia Rosenbaum and Matthew Donnelly

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