Kansas lawmaker arrested for possessing a firearm while under the influence

Carl Maughan has reportedly since stepped down from his role as committee vice chair

Dan Gooding
Wednesday 06 March 2024 19:15 GMT
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Carl Maughan was arrested by Topeka Police Department on Monday 4 March
Carl Maughan was arrested by Topeka Police Department on Monday 4 March (WIBW 13)

A state representative in Kansas stepped down as the chair of a committee after being arrested for possessing a firearm while driving under the influence.

Carl Maughan, a representative from Colwich, was detained by the Topeka Police Department in the early hours of Monday.

Local media reported that Mr Maughan, 52, was pulled over in Topeka after officers observed multiple traffic law violations.

They then allegedly found him in possession of a firearm and arrested him on suspicion of three offences: Possession of a firearm while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, failure to give a signal when changing lanes or turning, and improper driving on a laned roadway.

Mr Maughan, who has represented District 90 in Kansas since January 2023, was bonded out of jail on a $2,500 bail.

The representative told The Independent that he had “exercised poor judgement”.

“This conduct presented a poor example to my family, my constituents, and the citizens of the state of Kansas,” Mr Maughan said in a statement. “They deserve better and I am committed to doing better.

“I made a grave error in judgment and apologise and accept responsibility for my actions. I look forward to learning from this error in judgment, and becoming a better person as a result.”

It was also reported that the representative had stepped down from his role as Vice Chair of the House Judiciary Committee. He said this was to avoid distracting from the important work of the committee.

Topeka Police Department did not immediately return The Independent’s request for comment Wednesday morning.

Mr Maughan recently sponsored a bill which proposed “a constitutional amendment to amend section 4 of the Kansas bill of rights to recognize the right to bear arms as a fundamental right”.

Kansas does allow individuals to “keep and bear arms” for self-defence, for lawful hunting and recreational use, as well as “any other lawful purpose” under its Bill of Rights.

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