Kansas State Senate Majority Leader Gene Suellentrop currently faces five counts, including felony fleeing the police, in a case that should simply be called the “Thank God I’m old and white in a nice car” case.
Suellentrop found himself going the wrong direction on I-70, an interstate highway, nearly careening into the divider before an officer was able to stop him. He refused a breathalyzer and decided running from the police wasn’t enough—he might challenge them by calling the arresting officer “donut boy” and offering to fight him. Don’t worry. He’s okay.
From the Associated Press:
Kansas GOP Senate Majority Leader Gene Suellentrop faces five counts, including a felony fleeing to avoid arrest and a misdemeanor driving under the influence charge stemming from his March 16 arrest on Interstate 70 in Topeka.
An affidavit submitted by Kansas Highway Patrol Trooper Austin Shepley said tests indicated Suellentrop’s blood alcohol level was .17. The legal limit is .08.
After Suellentrop, 69, refused to take a breathalyzer test, he was taken to a Topeka hospital. At one point, he called Shepley “donut boy,” according to the affidavit, and said the events were “all for going the wrong way.”
The Republican was arrested and thrown into jail for an overnight. A judge found there were issues with the arrest and released Suellentrop from jail. His fellow Republicans noted the event and decided that the solution was to pray while they continued to work on voter suppression and anti-transgender legislation.
Senate President Ty Masterson, an Andover Republican, and Vice President Rick Wilborn, a McPherson Republican, issued a joint statement Tuesday evening calling the incident “serious and very unfortunate.” The statement came as senators debated budget legislation.
“We will continue to pray for Gene and his family as we gather more information,” they said. “The Senate continues to do our work on behalf of the people of Kansas.”
While the Republican senators were leading, Suellentrop was just coming home after offering to start taking some officers on.
After his arrest at 12:49 a.m. on March 16, the officer’s report reveals that the Senate Majority Leader commented “All for going the wrong way” and referred to him as “donut boy” while in the intoxilyzer room. Suellentrop, 69, refused a breathalyzer test, however, Judge Penny Moylan signed a search warrant for a blood sample. At Stormont Vail, the officer writes that Suellentrop became “slightly aggressive in his tone”. He writes that Suellentrop “looked me up and down stating he played state sports competitively in high school” and he could “take me”.
Welp, fine material here. I’m sure there is no other way this could have gone differently. None at all.