An off-duty Juneau police officer was taken into custody after a traffic crash on the North Douglas Highway.
Juneau police in a release said Officer Brent Bartlett was arrested Sunday on suspicion of driving under the influence and felony assault. Police said the third-degree assault charge was tied to causing injuries to a person while driving impaired.
Police shortly before 6:30 p.m. Sunday received report of a crash and determined that an outbound truck on the North Douglas Highway had rear-ended a second truck. A 48-year-old woman in the front truck was transported to the Bartlett Regional Hospital for treatment of injuries that police describe as non-life threatening.
Juneau police said Bartlett blew a .239 BAC when he was arrested.
“This is a very unfortunate event that Officer Bartlett made the choices that he did, and he has to be accountable for it,” Deputy Chief David Campbell said in an interview.
Campbell lauded his department and on-duty officers for treating this case like any other DUI.
“I’m proud of the responding officers for doing everything right,” Campbell said. “We took the fact that Officer Bartlett is a police officer out of the equation and charged him with exactly what we would charge anyone with.”
On Monday afternoon, Bartlett attended his court appearance via video conference from Lemon Creek Correctional Center, where he was being held in booking following his arrest. He was later released on his own recognizance Monday afternoon.
The Juneau District Attorney’s office will not be prosecuting the case, rather Ketchikan District Attorney Tim McGillicuddy will to avoid any appearance of conflict of interest.
“It’s cleaner this way,” McGillicuddy said, also adding that Bartlett’s “going to be treated like anyone else.”
Bartlett indicated in court that he would be hiring a private attorney.
Deputy Chief Campbell declined to say what Bartlett’s administrative status currently is, saying personnel status is not public information.
“He doesn’t have any kind of police powers at this point in time, but his police status is confidential,” said Campbell.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.