MYNORTHWEST NEWS

Seattle police officer arrested for DUI in 2022 still works for SPD

Apr 27, 2023, 6:55 PM

domestic violence felony...

Seattle Police Department vehicle (KIRO 7)

(KIRO 7)

Two Seattle police officers were arrested for driving drunk in Edmonds last year, according to newly-obtained court records. One of the officers has since retired, but the other remains employed at SPD.

Last May, homicide detective Thomas Michael Mooney was stopped by an Edmonds police officer in the 600 block of 9th Avenue South around 6:45 p.m. The arrest report states the officer observed Mooney swerving across the center line and speeding in a 30mph zone.

Seattle Police consent decree set to end after more than a decade

When asked for identification, Mooney showed the officer his Seattle Police Department (SPD) badge and said, “well, I have this.” The arrest report further states that once Mooney “repeatedly asked if I could just take him home instead of jail, or if I could just release him from the handcuffs because he’s one of us and on the same side.”

Other officers arrived and arrested Mooney on suspicion of DUI. He refused a breathalyzer and field sobriety test but submitted to a blood test once he was booked into the Snohomish County Jail.

Edmonds municipal court records show Mooney pleaded guilty in October to reckless driving, a gross misdemeanor. His attorney Scott Leist said at his plea hearing, “I think he was just in a really hard job, and it bubbled over, and it just got the best of him that day.” Mooney also attended a treatment program in California after his arrest, according to Leist. The judge suspended a 364-day jail sentence and a $5,000 fine but ordered Mooney to be put on probation.

Two months later, Seattle SWAT officer Rafael Martinez was stopped by Edmonds police around 2:18 a.m. on July 24th after an officer saw him make a rolling stop. The arrest report says Martinez’s eyes were bloodshot and smelled of alcohol. Martinez told the officer he had “drank one Coors Light” approximately 30 minutes before, but the report notes he was slurring his words and, upon exiting the car, was unsteady on his feet and seemed “as if he was going to fall backwards.”

Martinez also refused all field sobriety tests and had his blood drawn upon being booked into jail. He later pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of misdemeanor negligent driving and also received a suspended 90-day jail sentence and 24 months of probation.

A source within SPD confirms to KIRO Newsradio that Martinez remains an active employee with the department. When asked, SPD would not confirm whether an Office of Police Accountability investigation had been opened regarding Martinez’s arrest. Mooney retired from the force less than two weeks after his arrest and did not face professional consequences.

Two Seattle police officers charged with DUI

Seattle police also did not respond to questions regarding their policy when an officer is charged with or convicted of DUI. In December 2012, Seattle officers Sean Moore and Maria Gochnour were arrested when they crashed their car into a pole and then fled the scene. Prosecutors said Gochnour’s blood-alcohol level was three times over the legal limit. Just a few months earlier, Officer John Fox was accused of driving drunk in his unmarked police car, causing a chain-reaction crash.

Those incidents prompted then-Chief John Diaz to issue a memo to the department in 2013, warning officers not to drink and drive. Diaz said SPD employees go through the same criminal process as anyone else. They also face lost pay, demotion, and reassignment. On the second DUI offense, the employee would be fired.

A Seattle police spokesperson did not respond when asked if this remains the current department policy.

MyNorthwest News

Photo: Detectives are investigating a Seattle drive-by shooting that happened early Saturday mornin...

Julia Dallas

Seattle police: Woman shot in both hands in early morning drive-by shooting

Detectives are investigating a Seattle drive-by shooting that happened early Saturday morning. A woman was shot in her hands.

10 hours ago

Photo: President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the 75th anniversary of NATO at the Andrew W. Mellon...

MyNorthwest and KIRO Newsradio staff

‘Bring it on:’ Washington officials react to Biden dropping out of the race

Washington officials have reacted to President Joe Biden dropping out of the 2024 presidential election.

16 hours ago

I-5 pedestrian killed...

Bill Kaczaraba

Man killed in hit-and-run on Interstate 5 in Seattle

The Washington State Patrol is in the process of gathering further details about a traffic incident on Interstate-5that left one man dead.

2 days ago

Tegu Tazz...

KATY WADE, KIRO 7 NEWS

Granite Falls alligator turns out to be escaped pet tegu named ‘Tazz’

Reports of a 10-foot alligator have turned out to be an “incredibly docile and friendly” pet tegu by the name of Tazz.

2 days ago

Apartment fire in Sotuh Lake Union. (via KIRO 7)...

Bill Kaczaraba

South Lake Union apartment fire contained, 2 may be injured

An apartment fire in South Lake Union has been contained, but two people may have been injured.. The fire was in the 320 block of 7th Ave N but units remain in the area. Authorities are asking you to avoid the area. Firefighters are on scene at a reported fire in an apartment building in […]

2 days ago

CrowdStrike...

MATT O'BRIEN, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

How a faulty CrowdStrike update crashed computers around the world

All it took was one faulty CrowdStrike software update to cause global disruptions that grounded flights, and other services.

2 days ago

Seattle police officer arrested for DUI in 2022 still works for SPD