Manatee County Commissioner accused of DUI after driving into a tree wants body camera footage wiped out.


George Kruse's attorneys have asked the court to conceal any remarks he made following the tragedy.
George Kruse, Manatee County Commissioner.Photo byAdams

BRADENTON, FLORIDA: Body camera footage alongside remarks he made to a lieutenant following a suspected DUI collision, according to Manatee County Commissioner George Kruse, should be thrown out in his forthcoming criminal case.

The attempt to conceal his comments, which included footage from the lieutenant's body camera, was filed in a recent court document acquired by 10 Tampa Bay. According to investigators, Kruse smashed his Ford F-150 pickup into a tree in a neighborhood near his house in April.

In the footage from the responding lieutenant's body camera, Kruse tells the deputy he crashed the truck and can be seen slurring his words while answering inquiries. The lieutenant is subsequently heard remarking on the video, "he's inebriated."

According to the incident report, the county commissioner was disoriented, with "glassy eyes, slurred speech, clammy damp skin, and drooping eyelids." Kruse was released with a citation at the time because authorities couldn't verify he was driving at the time of the incident.

Kruse's attorney claims in the request that the lieutenant switched from an accident inquiry to a criminal probe without "changing hats."

Kruse's attorney claimed in the complaint that the lieutenant "never informed [him] that he was conducting a criminal investigation, and never at any point read him his Miranda warnings." "Any comments made in failure to do so are inadmissible in a criminal prosecution."

His counsel cites a 1993 Florida Supreme Court ruling, State v Norstrom, which states that comments made by a subject in police custody during a post-accident inquiry are confidential under Florida law until Miranda warnings are delivered. The privilege is intended to encourage drivers to tell investigators the truth about what caused a collision.

Kruse has pled not guilty to driving while intoxicated. A hearing date to review the request to throw out the statements and body camera video has not yet been established. His case is set to go to trial on February 6, 2023.

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