Five people were taken to hospitals after a Snohomish County sheriff’s deputy ran a stop sign in Everett, causing a crash, in the 2300 block of Rockefeller Avenue on April 17, 2015. (Herald file)

Five people were taken to hospitals after a Snohomish County sheriff’s deputy ran a stop sign in Everett, causing a crash, in the 2300 block of Rockefeller Avenue on April 17, 2015. (Herald file)

County pays $175,000 to passenger in crashed patrol car

He was the third person to settle with the county over the wreck caused by a deputy’s driving.

EVERETT — Snohomish County has settled what appears to be the final legal claim over a deputy’s on-duty crash in 2015.

The county in December agreed to pay $175,000 to Brett Losey, who was a passenger in deputy John Sadro’s patrol car at the time of the collision. The Daily Herald recently obtained a copy of the settlement through a public records request.

Sadro was driving Losey to the courthouse, where Losey was to be a witness in a trial. Sadro was speeding and ran a stop sign at 23rd Street and Rockefeller Avenue. Prosecutors alleged that he was driving 49 mph in a 25 mph zone.

The patrol car was broadsided by another vehicle. The impact sent the car spinning into the intersection before it struck a parked truck.

Five people were hospitalized in all.

One, a Darrington-area man, was pinned in the wreckage and lost his legs, among other serious injuries. He and his family later received $14.3 million from the county. Another driver settled with the county in 2017 for $130,000.

Only Losey’s case led to a lawsuit. As part of the settlement, his suit was dismissed Jan. 18 and he agreed not to seek further legal redress. Losey, now 25, listed an address in Brier. His attorney could not be reached for comment.

The county’s insurance covered all but $2 million of the settlements related to the crash, said Michael Held, a deputy prosecuting attorney in the civil division.

“The expectation always was to resolve the matter in a way fair to all parties,” he said Tuesday. “It took some time but we were able to do that.”

There also was a criminal case.

Sadro initially was charged with vehicular assault, a felony. He pleaded guilty to reckless driving and reckless endangerment, both misdemeanors. He was sentenced in June 2017 to work release, electronic home monitoring and community service. Those requirements were expected to wrap up in late 2018, according to court records.

An internal investigation at the sheriff’s office concluded in 2017, sheriff’s spokeswoman Shari Ireton said Monday. There was a “sustained finding,” though Ireton said she could not discuss the details. That term usually means there was a policy violation.

A public records request for those documents was not fulfilled in time for this story.

Sadro, now 58, “remains working as a precinct deputy, a job assignment that does not require driving,” Ireton said.

(Update: Records released Feb. 26 show Sadro received a 30-day unpaid suspension. As part of a last-chance agreement signed in 2017, he can’t have further policy violations for three years or he’ll face termination. He also can’t operate a county vehicle until questions are resolved about his insurance. Under the agreement, the deputy ceded his rights to appeal the discipline.)

Rikki King: 425-339-3449; rking@herald Twitter: @rikkiking.

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