James Bensley was arrested Tuesday night on suspicion of driving under the influence of intoxicants, online jail records show.
An Idaho State Police trooper stopped Bensley, 51, about 9:44 p.m. on Eagle Road near Sedona Street for failing to move over for an emergency vehicle, ISP spokeswoman Teresa Baker said. He was arrested on a charge of driving under the influence and briefly booked into the Ada County Jail shortly after midnight. He posted $500 bond and was released about a half-hour later.
Jail records indicate his first court appearance will be Dec. 29.
Bensley retired quietly in May, after 32 years with the Garden City Police Department. He was chief for 14 years.
Bensley filed tort claims against Garden City in 2013 and 2014 after getting into a disagreement with a city councilman over campaigning activities and whether the councilman should have access to an independent investigation into the police department. The matter was settled out of court.
Garden City has about 12,000 residents. The police chief oversees 36 staff, including 27 full-time officers, two code enforcement officers, and two probation and parole officers. The department has a budget of about $4 million - about 60 percent of the overall city budget of $6.9 million. Bensley’s salary at retirement was $127,000 a year.
Current Garden City Police Chief Rick Allen, who served as deputy chief under Bensley, declined to comment for this story.