Michigan Rep. Mary Cavanagh faces drunken driving charge following arrest in Livonia

Officer says Cavanagh was driving swerving on I-96 with 2 flat tires

Mary Cavanagh (WDIV)

LIVONIA, Mich.Michigan Rep. Mary Cavanagh is facing a drunken driving charge after she was arrested in Livonia by an officer who saw her swerving around a highway with two flat tires, according to authorities.

Erratic driving

On Feb. 25, an officer with the Livonia Police Department was in the area of Industrial Road and Merriman Road when he heard “the thumping of flat tires.”

He said a black Ford Escape was heading north on Merriman Road, approaching Schoolcraft Road. Both tires on the driver’s side of the SUV were flat, according to the officer.

He followed the Escape as it turned east on Schoolcraft Road and got onto eastbound I-96, police said. When it got onto the freeway, the SUV began swerving between the right and center lanes, authorities said.

The front driver’s side tire disconnected from the rim, the officer said.

The Escape got onto the Middlebelt Road exit ramp, driving over the solid white line and crossing the gore at the top of the ramp before activating its hazards, according to police.

The officer activated his emergency overhead lights and initiated a traffic stop.

Traffic stop

Cavanagh was identified as the driver of the Escape, police said. She was the only person inside the SUV.

When the officer spoke to her, she said, “I feel like I had some type of tire or something,” according to officials.

Cavanagh rifled through miscellaneous paperwork that didn’t include her driver’s license, the officer said. She said she was coming from the Livonia Democratic Party, but didn’t know where that had been, according to the police report.

Authorities said she continued to search her SUV for her license before going back to the paper she’d originally searched. The officer asked if she knew what had happened to her tires, and she said she did not, the police report states.

When asked again where she was traveling from, Cavanagh said Lansing, according to the officer.

She was asked to perform some sobriety tests to make sure she was OK to drive. The results of those tests were redacted from the police report, as was her answer when asked how much she’d had to drink.


After the sobriety tests, Cavanagh consented to a preliminary breath test, the officer said. She was arrested on suspicion of operating under the influence of alcohol, according to authorities.

The officer took Cavanagh to the Livonia Police Department jail without incident. She consented to a breath test, police said.

The Escape was impounded.

According to the police report, this is Cavanagh’s second operating while intoxicated offense.

Michigan Representative Mary Cavanagh, from Redford, is facing a drunk driving charge from February -- and this is not her first offense.

About the Author:

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.