News

Bill Allison voluntarily surrenders license

Maple Valley Mayor Bill Allison voluntarily surrendered his driving school instructor license, according to a spokeswoman with the Washington State Department of Licensing.

Christine Anthony, the DOL’s spokeswoman, said Allison’s voluntary cooperation allowed the department to close the case.

“The highest penalty we could have asked for is to have it taken away,” Anthony said. “To have him surrender it is better for everyone involved.”

Allison worked as an instructor at the I-5 Driving School in Maple Valley for more than two years.

Ryan Ryals, owner and founder of the school, told The Reporter in April that Allison no longer worked for the company.

A 17-year-old female told authorities that Allison, 41, made inappropriate and sexually suggestive comments during her time as his student and reported her feelings to a high school guidance counselor. The school reported the allegations to the King County Sheriff’s Office and detectives started an investigation in late January. Allison consistently denied any inappropriate conduct to police.

The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office declined to bring a case of communication with a minor for immoral purposes against Allison in March because of “legally insufficient” evidence. However, in reviewing the allegations, a deputy prosecutor wrote that Allison’s conduct “was certainly inappropriate and concerning given his access to minors and the position of authority he possesses as a driving instructor.”

The Department of Licensing received a complaint against Allison, which led to an investigation over his license as a driving instructor.

Anthony told The Reporter the Department of Licensing’s investigation was “very one-sided” because the victim in the case did not want to talk to the DOL, meaning they would have had nothing to charge Allison with.

“The police report is part of our investigative file,” Anthony said. “That is all we heard from the teenager.”

Anthony said she could only speculate on what would have happened if Allison hadn’t surrendered his license.

“I think the allegations were serious enough that we certainly would have tried to move forward, but thankfully he agreed to surrender it so we didn’t have to,” she said.

Allison did not return a call seeking comment on Tuesday.

Anthony said the letter is not a formal legal agreement, but the information would always be on his file if he ever attempted to be a driving school instructor elsewhere in the state. Anthony said the investigative report is currently going through the public disclosure process and that officials are taking extra precaution because the alleged victim is a minor.

 

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

Read the latest Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Oct 17 edition online now. Browse the archives.

Friends to Follow

View All Updates