Bryan Haysom

Republican Brian Haysom is running for House District 63, which covers southwest Bozeman.

A Belgrade Republican running for a Bozeman state House seat has been convicted of a handful of misdemeanors over the past several years.

Bryan Haysom, 34, who is running for House District 63, was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol in May 2009 after he was pulled over for crossing the centerline near Jackrabbit Lane and West Madison Avenue in Belgrade, according to records from Gallatin County Justice Court.

Court records show he has also faced a few other charges, including escape — a charge he disputes — and a 2019 charge of fishing without a license.

Haysom, the only Republican who has filed so far, said Friday he doesn’t think his criminal record should affect his candidacy.

“I don’t think these charges affect anything,” Haysom said. “If anything, it shows I’m quite a bit more of a local than other candidates.”

When Haysom was arrested for DUI in 2009, his blood alcohol content was 0.153%, which is above the legal limit of 0.08%. He pleaded guilty in June 2009 and was fined $535 and sentenced to 180 days in jail with 179 days suspended.

“It was a sad time in my life,” he said.

Two months later, he was charged with escape because he didn’t show up to serve one day in jail on the scheduled date, according to court records. Court records show he pleaded guilty to the charge in February 2010.

But Haysom contests this charge, saying that he doesn’t remember it and that he served all the jail time required and paid all the fines he owed.

“They make mistakes in their records because I don’t think the different agencies always communicate,” he said.

He also filed for bankruptcy in 2009, according to federal court records.

Other citations turned up in a search of court records showed three speeding tickets, including one for going 69 mph in a 35 mph zone.

This summer, Haysom was ticketed for fishing without a license in Hyalite. He was fined $135, which he paid.

“It was a horrible misunderstanding,” he said.

Haysom is running for the seat held by Rep. Zach Brown, a Democrat who isn’t seeking reelection.

He grew up in the Gallatin Valley, served in the military and taught in China. He graduated from Montana State University with a degree in history and plans to become a teacher. He said he was inspired to run for House District 63 because he wants to help solve problems he sees with society.

Alice Buckley, a Democrat, has also filed for the seat. She doesn’t have criminal violations filed against her in Gallatin County, according to court records.

Buckley, 27, moved to Bozeman after graduating from college and has worked for local nonprofits and businesses. She has said she entered the race to be a voice for women and younger people in Helena.

(Reporter Freddy Monares contributed to this report.)

Perrin Stein can be reached at pstein@dailychronicle.com or at 582-2648.

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