Pondera County Sheriff suspended by commissioners - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Pondera County Sheriff suspended by commissioners

Posted: Feb 07, 2018 10:20 AM Updated:

Pondera County Commissioners have suspended Sheriff Carl Suta pending the outcome of his official misconduct case.

About two dozen people came in attend the brief meeting. Only one person spoke up about Suta during the hearing. She stated that Suta had given out her personal information to a person stalking her. When she approached Suta, she said that he apologized.

After that, the commissioners voted to suspend Suta pending the outcome of the case involving a charge of official misconduct against him. Commissioners also voted that Suta will receive his pay during his suspension. Suta was charged last week with a misdemeanor count of official misconduct.

According to court documents, Pondera County Attorney Mary Ann Reis referred the allegation of misconduct by Suta to the Division of Criminal Investigation of the Montana Department of Justice.

Reis told the agent she had received an e-mail from a Child & Family Services caseworker about a father bringing a complete law enforcement investigative file with him to the office.

The father reportedly told the caseworker that Suta had given him the file, even though Toole County was handling the investigation. 

It also appeared that Suta had set up forensic interviews with the children in the case, even though Suta was not an investigator. When the agent interviewed Suta, Suta said he had once given the father the file. Suta said that the normal procedure is to contact the County Attorney, but he did not in this case.

When the agent questioned Suta about the laws governing the dissemination of confidential criminal justice information, Suta allegedly ended the interview. Suta has declined to comment about the charge.

Suta has filed for reelection as sheriff; so far, two other candidates have filed: Robert Skorupa and Ross Drishinski.

RELATED: ?Petition to recall Pondera County Sheriff Carl Suta approved

RELATED: ?Pondera County Sheriff pleads not guilty to misdemeanor assault charge

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