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Man with history of DUIs sent to prison for driving drunk again

Crime Watch

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IDAHO FALLS — A man on probation for a previous DUI is on his way to prison after being convicted of another drunk driving incident.

Kip Leroy Johnson, 59, of Shelley, was ordered July 19 to spend between two to seven years in prison after pleading guilty to felony driving under the influence. The charge stems from a March 23 hit and run where Bonneville County Sheriff deputies struggled to get an intoxicated Johnson out of his pickup truck on Sunnyside Road.

As part of a plea agreement made with Bonneville County prosecutors, misdemeanor charges of eluding and resulting arrest were dismissed.

Johnson has a history of DUIs. At the time of the March incident, he was on probation until 2026 for felony DUI. He was released from prison on a DUI charge in November 2020, according to the Idaho Department of Correction. As part of his new sentence, District Judge Dane H. Watkins Jr. ordered Johnson to serve his sentence alongside his previous DUI case.

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The March crash happened near Sunnyside Road and Rollandet Street. A witness reported an intoxicated Johnson hit his car then refused to stay at the scene, saying he had been drinking. Johnson then got into his truck and continued to drive down the busy road.

Deputies tried to arrest Johnson. He pulled his truck up onto a sidewalk but refused to listen to their commands to get out of the vehicle. Johnson then drove off again, going into the oncoming lanes of traffic on Sunnyside. It wasn’t until traffic forced Johnson to stop at the intersection of Ammon and Sunnyside Roads.

With Johnson still refusing to get out of his truck, deputies physically removed him from the driver’s seat and placed the truck in park.

Court records indicate there was a blood draw to determine Johnson’s blood alcohol content; however, the results were not back by the time of charges being filed.

In addition to the time in prison, Watkins ordered Johnson’s driver’s license be suspended for 18-months. He will also have to pay $1,290.50 in fees and fines.