Councilman-elect jailed on domestic violence allegation

RICK BRAINARD: Arrested on suspicion of domestic violence

Grand Junction City Councilor-elect Rick Brainard was arrested early Saturday morning on suspicion of domestic violence against his girlfriend.

Brainard, 51, who won election Tuesday night with nearly 58 percent of the vote for the City Council’s at-large seat, was interviewed and taken into custody at his Redlands home by a Grand Junction police officer just after 6 a.m. Saturday and booked at the Mesa County Jail on suspicion of misdemeanor counts of third-degree assault and harassment. He remained in jail Saturday evening.

According to a police arrest affidavit, officers were called Saturday to Brainard’s home for an assault report lodged by Brainard’s live-in girlfriend of eight months. The dispatch time isn’t included in the affidavit.

The woman told an officer she and Brainard had been arguing since Tuesday and he’d “left town” and didn’t return home until late Friday evening, according to the affidavit. The argument was rooted in a call or a text he’d received from a past girlfriend.

“There was some discussion about this and a physical altercation in the bedroom ... (woman) stated she was pushed into the dresser by her chest several times, her hair was pulled and she was grabbed by the arm and her face was grabbed,“the affidavit said.

The woman claimed Brainard later pinned her against a dresser as she called him a “liar and a cheat,” the affidavit said.

“(Woman) stated she called out for her (13-year-old) son to call 911, causing Rick to let her up,” the affidavit said.

Brainard allegedly made a derogatory remark about the woman, insisting she was “being childish.”

Later during the incident, the woman said she referred to Brainard with a vulgarity, at which point she claims she was hit on the right side of the face “with what she thought to be an open hand, causing her pain and injury,” according to the affidavit. She reported bruising and swelling on her face.

Brainard’s interview with a police officer — which covers a substantial portion of the affidavit — was removed in the redacted version of the document released to The Daily Sentinel on Saturday by the Grand Junction Police Department.

Brainard was arrested immediately after the interview.

He was unavailable for comment Saturday, in custody and being held without bond at the jail.

The vice president of business development at West Star Aviation and a Grand Junction resident for eight years, Brainard told the Sentinel earlier this year he was seeking a council seat out of frustration over financial decisions made by the existing council.

“Sometimes I think we set the bar too low in this community,” Brainard told the newspaper’s editorial board in March, which endorsed his candidacy.

The Sentinel left messages with Brainard seeking comment.


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