September 12, 2013 at 5:54 PM
City tribal liaison charged with domestic violence
A tribal liaison in the Seattle Office of Intergovernmental Relations was charged with misdemeanor domestic violence after police say she repeatedly hit her boyfriend at their apartment after both had been drinking.
Nicole Willis, 30, was arrested and jailed Saturday after her boyfriend called 911 to report that she hit him several times in the head and knocked away his cellphone after he tried to pour out alcohol. He told police she had come home earlier with a six-pack of beer and two bottles of vodka, and that she has a history of getting “out of control” when she is drunk, according to the police incident report.
Police found her locked inside a bedroom with their 15-month-old child.
Willis was charged Monday in Seattle Municipal Court with fourth-degree domestic violence assault. Bail was set at $5,000 and a no-contact order was issued.
Willis started her city job July 18 and was expected to develop and strengthen relationships with tribes in the Seattle area. Her hiring for the $80,000-per-year job was highlighted in a press release from the mayor’s office and City Council in July and she was profiled in Real Change newspaper, which noted that the tribal liaison position had been vacant since 2007.
Willis is a member of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation in Oregon. She previously worked as deputy director for First Americans at Obama for America and was tribal liaison for the U.S. Department of Labor under former Secretary Hilda Solis.
Willis could not be reached for comment. A spokesman for the mayor referred questions to the city personnel office.
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The Today File is a general news blog featuring real-time coverage of Seattle and the Northwest. It is reported by the news staff of The Seattle Times and edited by Assistant Metro Editor Nick Provenza.
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