SNOHOMISH COUNTY, Washington - The Island County Prosecutor has declined to file charges against Snohomish County Executive Aaron Reardon, who was accused last year of misuing county funds.
Island County Prosecuting Attorney Gregory M. Banks wrote that "there is insufficient evidence to justify filing criminal charges."
The claims against Reardon came to light shortly before the November election after county social worker Tamara Dutton went public with allegations that the two carried on a six-year affair that involved the use of county money on trips they took together.
"He's egotistical, and all he cares about is himself, and I think the way he acts makes it pretty clear," Dutton told KIRO 7 on Wednesday.
But Banks said evidence was lacking in the case against Reardon.
"Even the complaining witness had doubts about who was paying for Mr. Reardon's travel, whether Mr. Reardon paid for meals and lodging using a county or personal credit card," Banks wrote. "The county’s documentation of Mr. Reardon’s travel reimbursement for official county travel did not substantiate Ms. Dutton’s suspicions about misuse of county funds."
Dutton disputed the first half of that quote.
"I wasn't unsure and I find that offensive," she said.
Records examined by KIRO 7 news partner The Daily Herald in Everett also revealed that Reardon used county resources during his re-election campaign in 2011. Banks said his review of the case did not include an examination of those claims.
"Such violations, under the statutes in existence at the relevant times, would not have been criminal offenses," Banks wrote. "I trust that any complaints concerning Mr. Reardon’s alleged use of county facilities for campaign purposes will be examined by the Public Disclosure Commission, or other appropriate authorities."
Reardon won re-election in November.
The Snohomish County executive was not at his office Wednesday. Staffers said he was at a meeting but would not say where it was.
Reardon declined to speak with detectives during the investigation, which Dutton said didn't surprise her.
"Any man that doesn't speak, speaks guilt as far as I'm concerned," she said.