Last week, we revealed Karrie Howard got pulled over late at night in a city car.
So, we dug up his driving record. We found Howard has had his Ohio license suspended eight times and he’s been hit with more than two dozen tickets.
Then last week, one more case: Orange Village police stopped Howard as they suspected him of speeding and blowing a stop sign. An officer gave him a ticket for the stop sign.
“All right, well, I gotta give you a ticket for the stop sign. It was a complete roll. … You didn’t even attempt to stop,” he said.
Just after that incident, we asked the safety director what he’d say about his driving record.
“I would say I have the driving record of an old man, Ed. I have zero points on my license,” he answered.
But now we see Howard’s license was repeatedly suspended as punishment for points on his license from tickets, or no insurance.
The records show convictions for speeding, driving under suspension, no seat belt and more.
We also took a closer look at the timing of everything on that driving record.
The safety director has not had his license suspended in 15 years. His tickets have been spread out over 25 years, but that includes some in recent years. And now, one more case.
We went to see local defense attorney Henry Hilow, and we showed him that record. He has defended police officers facing discipline before the safety director.
“He’s shown a lack of responsibility,” he said, adding, “In his own personal activity, he shows a general disregard for rules. Yet, that’s what he’s charged with, responsible for, and I find it somewhat disturbing.”
For this story, Howard sent a statement. It said:
I have always been transparent about my driving record. An overwhelming majority of my infractions predated 2007. There is no retribution without accountability. Since 2007, I have had a reputable career as a prosecutor at the local, state and federal level. As with individuals in law enforcement, my duties go beyond a typical 9 to 5. As Chief Director of Public Safety I work the job not the hours. This is what the citizens of Cleveland deserve. My background, inclusive of my driving record, has allowed me to meet people where they are. I am a Marine Corps veteran and continue to serve my country as an Air Force Judge Advocate General. I also have held both secret and top-secret security clearances. My real-life experience has made me a well-rounded public servant who is more sympathetic to the voices of our residents.Statement from Karrie Howard
As for the latest ticket, Howard could pay $165 and clear it up, or go to court in two weeks.
As of late Wednesday, that ticket had not been paid.