By Eric Stevick Herald Writer
EDMONDS — An Edmonds police officer was arrested Thursday for investigation of having sex while on duty with a woman he’d detained.
The Edmonds Police Department asked Everett police to investigate allegations that stemmed from a May incident involving a Seattle woman, 28.
Investigators are recommending criminal charges against Edmonds police officer Daniel Lavely, Everett police officer Aaron Snell said.
Edmonds police learned of the allegations May 9.
Snell said the investigation looked into Lavely’s actions while he was on duty the night of May 6 and early morning of May 7.
He allegedly stopped the woman for jaywalking on Highway 99 in Edmonds. The officer determined she had an arrest warrant, but King County wasn’t willing to come and claim her. The woman was released and Lavely came into contact with her a few hours later at a motel on Highway 99.
A man at the motel called 911 early May 7 when he was concerned about the woman’s drug use, court papers said.
Lavely admitted to investigators that he put the woman in the back seat of his patrol car without handcuffs. She alleged that he drove to the back of large clothing store.
The woman told police that Lavely then initiated sex, asking her for a condom, according to court records. She said he had sex with her with his gun belt on before driving off.
“During this second interaction it was alleged that Lavely took temporary custody of the female, put her in his patrol car and drove her to a remote location where the two had sexual intercourse,” Snell said.
It’s a felony for a police officer to have sex with somebody they are detaining, even if the contact is consensual.
Police found witnesses and surveillance video that supported the woman’s story about where the officer took her and when. He gave police dispatchers different information.
“It is clear from the time line that (he) was not transporting (her) at the time he notified dispatch,” a police investigator wrote in court papers.
A condom wrapper was found in the location where the woman reported having sex with the officer. The wrapper matched condoms in her purse, according to court papers.
Lavely was booked into the Snohomish County Jail Thursday. Lavely said he didn’t have sexual contact with the woman. The Everett investigator noted that during their interview, however, the officer “never made any strong denials about the allegation,” according to court records.
The investigation has been forwarded to prosecutors with the suggestion that evidence supports filing a charge of felony first-degree custodial sexual misconduct. According to state law, that can occur when there is sexual contact, and “when the victim is being detained, under arrest, or in the custody of a law enforcement officer and the perpetrator is a law enforcement officer.”
Edmonds police Sgt. Mike Blackburn said Lavely was immediately placed on administrative leave and his law enforcement authority was suspended after the allegations surfaced in May.
He said Lavely, 46, has been employed with the Edmonds Police Department for seven years and was assigned to the patrol division.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446, email@example.com.