The wife of Kansas Senate Majority Leader Terry Bruce claims in a court petition over her arrest for driving under the influence that she was unlawfully stopped and never refused to take a breath test.
On the afternoon of Dec. 11, 2013, Hutchinson police arrested Sarah Bruce, 41, of Nickerson, on suspicion of driving under the influence, possession of a controlled substance and unsafe backing. The Hyundai car she was driving struck another vehicle. No one was injured in the accident.
She is charged with refusing the request of law enforcement to submit to a preliminary breath test and operating a vehicle while the alcohol concentration in her breath was .159. Kansas' legal limit is under .08.
The Hutchinson News reports Bruce claims in her petition in Reno County that the officer unlawfully stopped her before asking her to take the test, and a physical disability prevented her from giving a complete breath sample.
Legislation that Sen. Bruce voted for in 2012 toughened penalties for refusal to take a DUI test and for a blood-alcohol concentration exceeding .15. It can result in suspension of a person’s driving privileges for one year. Then the person is restricted to driving only a motor vehicle equipped with an ignition interlock device for a specified period after suspension.
The Kansas Department of Revenue has determined law enforcement acted reasonably.