Officer faces charge of drunken driving

A Seattle police officer has been charged with drunken driving and reassigned to administrative work after he was stopped last month by two State Patrol troopers who say the officer threatened to kill them for pulling him over.

Wesley Friesen, 27, of Mukilteo, a patrol officer in Seattle's East Precinct, was stopped in Lynnwood on Nov. 2 for making a U-turn on Highway 99.

When Trooper Sean O'Connell went up to Friesen's car, Friesen flashed his Seattle Police Department badge, according to the arrest report.

The trooper said Friesen was asked to get out of his car and take a sobriety test because he had watery eyes and slurred speech. He failed the test and was arrested, according to the arrest report.

Friesen then began swearing at and belittling O'Connell, according to the arrest report.

When a second trooper arrived, Friesen reportedly told them, "If I get out of these cuffs I will [expletive] kill you both," according to the arrest report.

Friesen, who has been with Seattle police for three years, has been placed on administrative reassignment, and Seattle police have launched an internal investigation, said police spokesman Sean Whitcomb.

Jeffrey Veitch, Friesen's attorney, said his client regrets the incident and has apologized to the officer involved.

"Obviously the case is only in the preliminary stages," Veitch said. "Mr. Friesen has cooperated fully in the process, and once we have more information we will be able to proceed and hopefully resolve the matter in a timely fashion."

After his arrest, Friesen took two breath tests which registered blood-alcohol content of 0.228 percent and 0.226 percent, nearly three times the legal limit, according to the arrest report.

Jennifer Sullivan: 206-464-8294 or