Crime & Courts

Alaska Democratic Party director charged with DUI, refusing breath test

The executive director of the Alaska Democratic Party was arrested for driving under the influence early Saturday near Soldotna, according to law enforcement.

Lindsay Kavanaugh, 42, faces three misdemeanor charges for driving under the influence of a controlled substance, refusing to undergo a breath test, and unplugging trooper equipment following her arrest.

Kavanaugh has served as the executive director of the Alaska Democratic Party since 2019. Prior to that, she worked as a senior adviser to Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Begich, among other positions.

“I am disappointed that my friend and colleague may have exercised poor judgment while on personal leave and jeopardized the safety of herself and others,” said Mike Wenstrup, chair of the Alaska Democratic Party. “As Executive Director, Lindsay’s performance to date has been exemplary. I remain confident in her ability to perform her responsibilities as she continues to move the Alaska Democratic Party forward.”

Kavanaugh has retained an attorney, Eric Derleth. Derleth was not immediately available for comment. Kavanaugh did not respond to calls and messages on her personal phone.

Kavanaugh was stopped after 1 a.m. Saturday night by Alaska State Troopers for moving violations on the Sterling Highway, according to a trooper report.

According to the trooper report, investigation revealed Kavanaugh “was impaired by alcoholic beverages.” She was charged with driving under the influence of a controlled substance, a class A misdemeanor, according to court documents.

Kavanaugh refused to submit to a breath test following arrest and was subsequently charged for refused to submit to a chemical test, a class A misdemeanor.

According to the trooper report, Kavanaugh unplugged trooper equipment while at a trooper post, resulting in a charge of fifth degree criminal mischief, a class B misdemeanor. Additional information on the charges was not immediately available.

Kavanaugh was held at the Wildwood pretrial facility and has since been released.

Iris Samuels

Iris Samuels is a reporter for the Anchorage Daily News focusing on state politics. She previously covered Montana for The Associated Press and wrote for the Kodiak Daily Mirror.

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