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Intoxicated mayor arrested in driver's seat of bus outside elementary school in central Minnesota

The Mayor of Rice, Minnesota was in a bus outside an elementary school.

The Mayor of the City of Rice in central Minnesota was arrested for DWI while sitting in a school bus outside an elementary school on Thursday. 

According to the Benton County Sheriff's Office, newly elected Mayor Erik Richard Bonde, 46, of Rice, was arrested after police and deputies discovered alcohol in his possession as he sat in the driver's seat of a van-sized school bus outside Rice Elementary School. 

He was arrested at 3:05 p.m., just 25 minutes before school got out. 

It's not yet clear if Bonde had driven kids to school Thursday morning nor is it clear if he was preparing to transport children home prior to his arrest. Bring Me The News has reached out to the transportation company he worked with and has not yet heard back. 

The sheriff's office reports that Bonde was contacted by a police officer around 1:30 p.m. informing him that he couldn't drive because he has a suspended driver's license. Ninety minutes later police learned that Bonde was in the bus outside the school, and upon making contact with him police saw signs of intoxication. 

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A blood test revealed that Bonde had a blood-alcohol level above the legal limit so he was arrested and booked into the Benton County Jail. He was issued a citation for misdemeanor DUI and possessing an open bottle. 

Bonde was released from jail once here sobered up. 

Sauk Rapids-Rice Public Schools Superintendent Aaron Sinclair told Bring Me The News that "student safety is always of the utmost importance" and the district "appreciates the work of local law enforcement as they work to ensure our students, staff, and community members are safe."

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