An Edmonds police officer was charged Thursday with first-degree custodial sexual misconduct, a felony, accused of having sex with a woman he had detained in May.
An Edmonds police officer was charged Thursday with first-degree custodial sexual misconduct, a felony, accused of having sex with a woman he had detained in May
Officer Daniel Lavely, 47, was arrested by Everett police in June and placed on paid administrative leave during the lengthy investigation. He has been with the Edmonds department more than seven years.
According to charges filed by Snohomish County Deputy Prosecutor Adam Cornell, Lavely first contacted the alleged victim, a 28-year-old Seattle woman, after she reportedly jaywalked on Highway 99 in Edmonds on the night of May 6.
Early the next morning, Lavely encountered the same woman while responding to a 911 call about her fleeing from the emergency room at Swedish Medical Center, Edmonds Campus. Lavely found the woman at a nearby motel and placed her in the back of his patrol car.
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The Seattle woman told investigators that Lavely drove her to the “poorly lit back parking lot” of the Burlington Coat Factory in Edmonds and forced the woman into sex, charges said.
While Everett police say the woman was not handcuffed, the charges say that she was “detained, under arrest or in the custody of the defendant.”
Everett police were brought in to investigate the sexual-misconduct allegation and forwarded the case to Snohomish County prosecutors in June.
Cornell, the deputy prosecutor, said that it took several months to file charges because in “every sexual-assault case we thoroughly review all the evidence and consider the applicable laws before making a charging decision. Some cases just take longer than others to accomplish that task.”
Seattle attorney Lauren Gotchy, who is representing Lavely, said “Mr. Lavely has maintained his innocence from the beginning and believes the alleged victim’s allegations are false and without merit.”
Now that the criminal investigation is complete, Edmonds police will launch an internal-affairs investigation to determine whether disciplinary actions are warranted, the department said in a news release.
Jennifer Sullivan: 206-464-8294 or firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter @SeattleSullivan.