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Man in court for 150 mph chase

Bruce Pueppke, of Letcher, leaves the courtroom in the Hanson County Courthouse on Wednesday in Alexandria. (Sean Ryan/The Daily Republic)

ALEXANDRIA — A Letcher man pleaded not guilty Wednesday to an aggravated eluding charge for allegedly leading law enforcement on a high-speed chase.

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Bruce Pueppke, 60, entered his plea at the Hanson County Courthouse.

Pueppke is accused of speeding up to 150 mph on Interstate 90 and eluding law enforcement by not stopping when a Highway Patrol trooper had his lights on. The chase began in Hanson County and ended in Davison County, just north of Mitchell.

Pueppke is also charged with reckless driving, resisting arrest, speeding over 75 mph, speeding over 65 mph, and two counts of failure to stop at a stop sign — all misdemeanor charges.

Pueppke had already posted a $2,000 bond to get out of jail, but his attorney, Pat Schroeder, of Sioux Falls, requested it be reduced to a personal recognizance bond.

“I’m concerned about the claims here,” said Judge Tim Bjorkman, referring to the claims in the court documents. “What assurance do I have that he’s not going to get set off by something while awaiting trial?”

Schroeder told the judge Pueppke knows if he violates his bond, he will sit in jail, and he doesn’t want to do that.

Assistant Hanson County State’s Attorney Doug Papendick said he had no objections to a bond reduction.

Bjorkman hesitantly reduced the bond and told Pueppke the bond could be revoked if he didn’t comply with the conditions.

A trial date has not yet been scheduled.