‘Donut boy’: Republican politician taunts police after wrong-way chase

When critics of the party accuse Republicans of heading in the wrong direction, they don’t usually mean it literally. But that’s what happened with the Kansas senate majority leader, Gene Suellentrop, who was arrested early in the morning on 16 March after leading police on a chase that hit speeds of 90mph and saw the lawmaker travelling against the flow of traffic and narrowly avoiding striking other vehicles on the road.

“They about hit me, but I’m OK, I’m fine,” one driver who called 911 on the night in question said, as reported by the Kansas City Star.

“They were in the wrong lane and they met coming up the on-ramp and scared the crap out of me,” a second caller said.

New details of Suellentrop’s behavior after his arrest have emerged in the police affidavit from that night. After he refused to take a breathalyzer test, a warrant was placed to withdraw blood, which showed an alcohol level twice the legal limit, the affidavit alleges.

While in custody the conservative politician, who has served in the state senate since 2017 and was previously a member of the Kansas house of representatives, allegedly became combative with the arresting officer, Kansas highway patrol’s Austin Shepley.

Op 'n punt, the police report says, Suellentrop referred to him as “donut boy”, presumably a reference to the common joke about police spending most of their time at donut shops. The 69-year-old politician further sized up Shepley and announced that he could physically dominate him if he wanted to.

“While the phlebotomist was administering the blood kit, Gene Suellentrop’s demeanor becoming slightly aggressive in his tone, he made reference to physically going up against me,” Shepley said. “He looked me up and down, stating he played state sports competitively in high school. He stated he could ‘take me’.”

Following the arrest, Suellentrop announced he would be handing over his leadership duties to the assistant majority leader, Larry Alley, until “matters that I am currently dealing with are resolved”.

Sedertdien, both state Democrats and Republicans have criticized his behavior.

“I am deeply troubled by the latest details that have emerged surrounding Senate Majority Leader Gene Suellentrop’s arrest,” the state senate minority leader, Dinah Sykes, in 'n verklaring gesê. “I thank God that no one was hurt by his extremely reckless and dangerous actions. While Senator Suellentrop deserves due process and appropriate consequences for his irresponsible behavior, he also deserves to be held to the same level of accountability as the Kansans he has been elected to represent. I am disappointed that he has not come to this conclusion himself.

“While we continue to respect due process, there are many aspects of the alleged behavior that are deeply disappointing, and severe consequences will be unavoidable,” the senate president, Ty Masterson, bygevoeg.

Suellentrop’s first court appearance will be on 3 Junie.

Kommentaar gesluit.