Bishop charged with killing pedestrian released
Criminal complaint released Wednesday
A Lutheran bishop who police say was intoxicated when he struck and killed a Sun Prairie woman with his vehicle Sunday has been released and has entered treatment.
Police said Bruce Burnside, 59, hit Maureen Mengelt, 52, with his vehicle on the northbound off-ramp of Hwy. 151 near Windsor Street, just before 3 p.m.
A Dane County judge Wednesday ordered Burnside held on $150,000 cash bail for three of the four charges against him. However, the judge allowed him to leave on a signature bond on Thursday, if he agreed to admit himself in to an alcohol treatment facility.
The Dane County Jail said Thursday Burnside has been released from custody. A statement from the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin said Burnside entered an inpatient treatment facility
Burnside is charged with homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle, hit-and-run resulting in death, homicide by negligent use of a vehicle and hit-and-run of an attended vehicle.
Emergency crews took Mengelt to St. Mary's Hospital in Sun Prairie, where she later died. The criminal complaint states Mengelt suffered multiple rib fractures and a broken pelvis.
Back at the scene of the accident, Burnside left a trail of debris -- including a downed traffic light -- while trying to get away from the crash, according to police.
Police found Burnside in his heavily-damaged Honda at a gas station about a block away from the scene of the accident. Burnside denied using drugs or alcohol to an officer at the scene, according to the complaint. The complaint states Burnside took a breath test showing a blood alcohol level of 0.128.
A video taken at a restaurant near the crash scene shows a vehicle speeding down the off-ramp, the collision and the vehicle leaving the scene, according to the complaint.
Burnside is a bishop in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. He oversees 145 congregations in a 13-county area.
Burnside's assistant, Rev. Blake Rohrer, confirmed Wednesday Burnside remains the elected bishop of the synod.
Copyright 2013 by Channel 3000. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.