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Sen. Majority Leader’s next court appearance for DUI/fleeing set for June 3

Gene Suellentrop (Shawnee Co. Jail)
Gene Suellentrop (Shawnee Co. Jail)(Shawnee Co. Jail)
Published: Mar. 30, 2021 at 5:04 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The Kansas Senate Majority leader will next appear in court June 3 to face charges including driving under the influence and flee or attempt to elude law enforcement officers. The case is set to be heard at 3 p.m. Senator Gene M. Suellentrop posted a $5,000 cash bond Tuesday according to court records.

According to the Shawnee County Department of Corrections, Gene Suellentrop was booked just before 4 a.m. Tuesday, March 16 in connection with driving under the influence, speeding, driving the wrong way on a divided highway, and attempting to run from the police. A judge ordered Suellentrop released from jail after his first appearance due to lack of probable cause, saying the officer’s report was missing pertinent information.

Several people called 911 early that morning to report a white SUV driving the wrong way on I-470 near Burlingame Rd. in Topeka. According to the Kansas Highway Patrol, an officer caught up with the vehicle just before 1 a.m. Tuesday, as it headed eastbound in the westbound lanes of I-70 near the Gage Blvd. exit. KHP officials said a Capitol Police Officer tried to stop the vehicle, but the driver kept going, finally stopping near the 8th St. exit. The driver was identified as Suellentrop and subsequently arrested.

According to the complaint, Suellentrop “failed to stop for a police roadblock, drove around a tire deflating device placed by a police officer, engaged in reckless driving, was involved in a motor vehicle accident, intentionally caused damage to property, committed five or more moving violations, and/or attempt to elude capture for the commission of any felony.” Additionally, the paperwork reveals that Suellentrop was driving 90 in a 65 mph zone.

The Kansas Highway Patrol completed their investigation and turned over their findings to the Shawnee County District Attorney, Friday, March 26. The DA announced his office would be filing charges that same day. Suellentrop faces 5 charges that include a felony, two misdemeanors, and two driving infractions: flee or attempt to elude LEO by engaging in reckless driving, driving under the influence of drugs/alcohol, reckless driving, improper crossover on divided highway, and maximum speed limits.

As part of his conditions of release, Suellentrop must not possess or consume any alcohol or illegal drugs, not operate a car without a valid license and insurance, remain law-abiding, and also be willing to waive extradition.

Suellentrop is represented by Thomas G. Lemon of Cavanaugh, Biggs & Lemon, P.A. in Topeka.

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