A West Fargo, North Dakota man has been given the dubious distinction of having the highest-ever dui bail set by Cass County Judge Wade Webb.
Kevin Roger Tegtmeier appeared in Webb's courtroom today to face his fourteenth driving under the influence charge. Tegtmeier was pulled over this Friday the thirteenth near the West Fargo Fairgrounds when a police officer noticed his vehicle had a lot of smoke coming from underneath it, according to court documents. A check of the vehicle revealed that the registration was for a different vehicle, and that Tegtmeier's license had been revoked. He later blew a .251 blood alcohol content, according to police reports.
Tegtmeier's bail Monday was set at fifteen thousand dollars cash -- five thousand more than prosecutors asked for.
In court, prosecutors said the only way to keep him from drinking was to keep him in custody.
"I've found that people who are drinking are poor judges of whether they should be driving. At some point, friends and family need to say to people, I'm taking your keys away. I'll call you a taxi, but you're not getting your own way home this time," says Cass County State's Attorney Birch Burdick. Burdick couldn't comment on Tegtmeier's past criminal history specifically, but he did say that often, high fines, jail time and taking a driver's license away don't seem to do much to deter repeat offenders.
In North Dakota, DUIs are misdemeanors unless you commit five or more in seven years. In Minnesota, it's four DWIs (driving while intoxicated) or revocations in ten years before charges typically are enhanced to a felony.