By Noah Haglund <I>Herald Writer</I>
MUKILTEO — Snohomish County Council Chairman Brian Sullivan was arrested for investigation of drunken driving Thursday evening after he blew more than twice the legal limit in an alcohol breath test.
Sullivan, 54, is in his second term on the County Council and also has served as Mukilteo’s mayor and in the Legislature.
When reached Friday afternoon, the popular Democrat would say little about the arrest. “I’m just sorry,” he said, adding that he didn’t think the incident would affect his County Council duties.
Sullivan was arraigned in Everett District Court Friday. He pleaded not guilty. District Court Judge Tam Bui accepted the plea but then recused herself. It’s unclear if the case will stay in Snohomish County or will move to another county.
Sullivan is one of 11 candidates on the Aug. 7 primary ballot for a one-month term in Congress. That spot opened up when Jay Inslee resigned from the House of Representatives to run for governor in Washington.
Mukilteo police responded at 7:51 p.m. to a report of a car driving southbound “all over the road” in the 10700 block of Mukilteo Speedway. A witness had reported seeing the car turn west onto Chennault Beach Road, then stop in front of a business, police said.
An officer found the vehicle in front of the business and later identified the driver as Sullivan, police said. It was not a county car.
“The officer smelled alcohol on Mr. Sullivan’s breath and asked him if he had been drinking. Mr. Sullivan stated that he had,” according to a police department press release.
After performing field-sobriety tests, the officer arrested Sullivan for investigation of DUI, police said. At the Mukilteo Police Department, Sullivan’s breath samples measured about 0.16 two times. That’s twice the legal limit. Following standard practice, police issued Sullivan a DUI citation and released him.
Sullivan lives in Mukilteo and has been involved in city, county and state politics for nearly three decades.
He served as Mukilteo’s mayor for two terms and led the city when it annexed Harbour Pointe into city limits.
He was elected to the Legislature in 2001 and won a seat on the Snohomish County Council in 2007. He won re-election to the County Council in landslide last year.
Sullivan owned and operated a pizza restaurant and brewery in Mukilteo for 14 years.
Reporters Diana Hefley, Eric Stevick and Rikki King contributed to this report. Noah Haglund: 425-339-3465, firstname.lastname@example.org.