Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Assistant police chief charged with DUI

Sun Valley mum on possible disciplinary action


By TERRY SMITH
Express Staff Writer

Mike Crawford

Sun Valley Assistant Police Chief Mike Crawford has been charged with misdemeanor DUI for allegedly driving while intoxicated and backing into a parked car early Saturday evening in downtown Hailey.

Crawford, a 53-year-old Hailey resident, was not arrested. Instead, he was issued a citation ordering him to report for arraignment at 9 a.m. on Aug. 27 in Blaine County Magistrate Court.

Crawford remained at work Monday at the Sun Valley Police Department. Police Chief Cameron Daggett declined to discuss possible disciplinary measures.

"I've been instructed to make no comment on his situation," Daggett said.

Crawford has been employed by Sun Valley police since 1991. He has been assistant police chief for about 10 years.

Hailey Police Chief Jeff Gunter said Monday that the accident occurred on Main Street about 7:18 p.m. on Saturday. He said Crawford was southbound in a black 2004 Toyota Tundra pickup when he stopped in front of McClain's Pizzeria and attempted to parallel park. Gunter said Hailey Patrolman Jeremiah Jones was behind the Crawford vehicle and saw it hit a parked 2009 Toyota RAV4 SUV, causing minor damage to the SUV.

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Upon investigation, Gunter said Crawford smelled of alcohol and failed field sobriety tests. He was transported to the Blaine County Public Safety Facility, where a breath test was administered.

According to a Hailey police report, Crawford registered a blood-alcohol level of .17, which is more than double the Idaho legal driving blood-alcohol limit of .08.

Gunter said he isn't sure why Crawford wasn't arrested.

"That's a good question," Gunter said. "I'd have to ask why he wasn't arrested, but he was cited and released."

For safety reasons, Gunter said it may not be a good idea to put a police officer in jail with other inmates.

Once released, Gunter said Crawford was not allowed to drive.

"I think his wife took him home," Gunter said. "That's what they told me."

Terry Smith: tsmith@mtexpress.com






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