Police: Brockton Senator Drank At Work Event Before Drunk Driving Arrest, Declined Breathalyzer

Printed from: https://newbostonpost.com/2018/03/27/police-brockton-senator-drank-at-work-event-before-drunk-driving-arrest-declined-breathalyzer/

By Matt Murphy

BOSTON — Sen. Michael Brady of Brockton told police he had been drinking at a “work event” before he was pulled over and arrested for drunk driving in Weymouth early Saturday morning, according to a copy of the police report, which says he failed multiple field sobriety tests.

Brady, a two-term Democratic senator, was on his way home from Boston when he was stopped by Weymouth police on Route 18, also known as Main Street, in South Weymouth at around 2:22 a.m. and placed under arrest for operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, negligent operation of a motor vehicle and a marked lanes violation.

According to police, Brady had previously been charged with operating under the influence in December 1998, also in Weymouth.

Driving a gray Chevy Sonic, Brady was observed by another driver from Plymouth on Interstate 93 swerving back and forth on the highway. The person followed Brady from the highway into Weymouth out of concern for Brady’s well-being and that of other people on the road, according to the police report, and called Weymouth Police to report what he had seen.

A patrolman in the area quickly found Brady’s vehicle driving southbound on Main Street and observed the vehicle swerving between two southbound lanes, “almost driving completely into the parking lot of John’s Liquors,” before getting back into the travel lane and crossing the double-yellow line into the northbound side of the street.

Upon stopping for police the officer reported a “blank stare” on Brady’s face, bloodshot glassy eyes, slurred speech and a strong smell of alcohol. He was also unsteady on his feet, and told the officer he had been drinking “at a work event” in Boston.

The Weymouth officer administered multiple field sobriety tests, including being asked to recite the alphabet starting with A and ending in Z. Brady, according to the report, slurred the letters together to get to H, I, J and then repeated H, I, J before stating “Z.”

Brady, in the patrolman’s opinion, failed all five field tests and was place under arrest. At one point during the interaction with police, he handed over his Commonwealth of Massachusetts identification card and told the officer he was a state senator.

Once in custody and at Weymouth Police headquarters, Brady declined to take breathalyzer test, and his license was automatically suspended.

Brady’s office confirmed the senator’s arrest on Tuesday morning after inquiries were first made by the News Service on Monday.

“I want to apologize to the Weymouth Police, my constituents, my friends and colleagues in the Legislature for any embarrassment and distraction that this incident causes. I know that as a Senator, I am held to a higher standard, and I will abide by the advice of my counsel as this matter is adjudicated by our judiciary. I am grateful for the fairness, integrity and transparency of that process,” Brady said in a statement released to the News Service.

He said he did not anticipate making any further public comment until the legal process is concluded.

Senate President Harriette Chandler expressed her disappointment in Brady’s arrest, but a spokesman said she wanted to let the courts adjudicate the case before considering any internal disciplinary action against the senator.

“I’ve spoken to Senator Brady and expressed my disappointment. We hold legislators to a higher standard, and I expect him to live up to those standards in the future,” Chandler said in a statement.

Brady was released from custody Saturday morning, and arraigned Monday in Quincy District Court on charges of operating under the influence, negligent operation of a motor vehicle and marked lanes violations.

The Quincy District Court clerk’s office said Brady, 55, was released after his arraignment on personal recognizance with a pre-trial hearing scheduled for April 13. The clerk’s office said Brady pleaded not guilty.

Karl Ulett, the driver who followed Brady on the highway and called the police, said he was an off-duty Uber driver who had finished driving for the night and was headed home to Plymouth. He told the News Service Tuesday afternoon that he saw a car that was not “holding its lane.”

After passing Brady on I-93, Ulett looked in the rearview mirror and saw that Brady was still not steady behind the wheel. Though he wasn’t sure if alcohol or cellphone use might be the cause, he pulled over and let Brady pass him again near the Route 3 split in Braintree and followed him to Exit 16 where Brady exited Route 3 and Ulett called police.

Asked why he followed Brady, Ulett said, “It’s late at night, the clubs are letting out and there could be more than just him driving drunk or texting. I didn’t know if he was drunk, but it seemed like alcohol because of the way he was swerving. Safety for everyone.”

Ulett was surprised to learn that the man he had followed was a state senator, and said he didn’t even know until Tuesday when he was contacted by reporters that the man he had followed had been arrested for allegedly being drunk behind the wheel.

“So I made the right call. I feel better now. I just wanted to make sure he was alright,” Ulett said. “Even today, I hope he’s Ok. I drive 12, 13, 14 hours a day. I see everything you can see on the road and there’s some things you take lightly and some things you can’t take lightly.”

Brady had been scheduled to visit with Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito on Tuesday afternoon the Colchester Street and Mayflower Road Improvement Project in Plympton, which received a MassWorks grant in 2015 for road repairs, but he did not make an appearance at that event.

Asked about the arrest, Gov. Charlie Baker said he didn’t know much about the details of the incident.

“I was actually with him at an event at Florian Hall for the firefighters last night. We chatted briefly, but I’m not familiar with any of the details on that. The one thing I would always say, and I think this applies to all of us, is one of the things that’s most important to everybody, everywhere, is we have lots of ride-sharing services, and if one’s available, people should take it,” Baker told reporters at the State House.

Brady served seven years in the House before winning a special Senate election in 2015. He is currently the co-chair of the Joint Committee on Revenue.