Former Guthrie Police Officer Fights To Get Back On The Force

Monday, January 30th 2017, 6:00 pm
By: News 9

A fired Guthrie police officer is still trying to get his job back.

It's been more than two years since an arbitrator ruled that the City of Guthrie should have never fired Lt. Mark Bruning.

The City of Guthrie has appealed the arbitrator's ruling time and time again.

Attorney Scott Adams has represented Bruning ever since he was fired from the Guthrie Police Department in October 2013.

Adams said all his client wants is to go back to work.

This all started after a public intoxication arrest at the Mumford and Sons concert in September 2013. 

Bruning arrested his wife's ex-husband there after the two exchanged words during a crowd control issue.

Kyle White was booked into jail and held for several hours, but was never charged and his ticket was later dismissed.

White sued the City, saying his civil rights were violated and the two reached a settlement out of court.

Both an arbitrator and the district court ruled that though Bruning did abuse his power, the City of Guthrie should not have terminated him, and instead should have only suspended him for six months and then reinstated him.

That is yet to happen.

Adams said the City of Guthrie is wasting hundreds of thousands of tax payer dollars.

“Lt. Bruning is entitled to three years of back pay, plus all the increases that go with it, plus all the attorney’s fees which now is approaching a ridiculous amount of money,” said Adams. “So I don't know when they are going to surrender.”

Adams says this case has cost the City of Guthrie more than $400,000.

Bruning, who is from Guthrie and still has family there, says being reinstated back on the force is all he really wants. 

"I love law enforcement,” said Bruning during the news conference. “I started in Guthrie when I was 20. I want to end in Guthrie.”

And though Bruning acknowledges he abused his power during the 2013 arrest of his wife's ex-husband, he's ready to accept the recommended six-month suspension and move forward.

Bruning said he doesn't anticipate any animosity since there is a new police chief, new officers and even a new city management team in place in Guthrie now. 

He said this case has prevented him from being considered by any other police departments.

“I'm just ready to get back to work,” said Bruning.

The Guthrie city manager’s officer referred our calls to the law firm representing them on this case.

News 9 called the attorney representing the City of Guthrie several times and even showed up at the law office Monday afternoon. News 9 has yet to get a response.

Adams said that doesn't surprise him since he hasn't heard from them either.