Former longtime Garden City Police Chief James Bensley pleaded guilty to misdemeanor DUI in late February, cancelling a trial set for late March, according to court records.
Magistrate Judge James Cawthon sentenced Bensley to 180 days in jail. All but four days were suspended, and Bensley was given credit for one day served. He was given the option of serving the remaining three days as community service.
Bensely was also ordered to pay fines and fees of $605.50. His driver’s license was suspended for 180 days, starting on Jan. 8, but he has applied for a restricted license. He has completed eight hours of drug/alcohol education and has attended a victim’s impact panel, court records show.
The former police chief also wrote a letter of apology to the officers who arrested him, a Canyon County spokesman said Tuesday. The Canyon County Prosecutor’s Office served as special prosecutor on the case.
Cawthon granted Bensley a withheld judgment, so if Bensley successfully completes one year of unsupervised probation he may petition the court to dismiss the case.
Bensley, 51, retired from the Garden City Police Department in March last year after 14 years as chief. He was with the department for more than three decades.
Bensley was driving north on Eagle Road near McMillan Road around 10:30 p.m. Dec. 8 when he was pulled over by an Idaho State Police trooper for failing to pull over for an emergency vehicle, according to the Ada County Sheriff’s Office and court records.
He was cited for misdemeanor driving under the influence. He was booked into the Ada County Jail. He posted $500 bond and was released soon after.
Toxicology tests showed that Bensley’s blood-alcohol level was .122, above the legal limit of .08, court records show.