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Judge says petition to recall Pondera County Sheriff is insuffic - KXLH.com | Helena, Montana

Judge says petition to recall Pondera County Sheriff is insufficient

Posted: Dec 14, 2017 1:52 PM Updated:
Pondera County Sheriff Carl Suta Pondera County Sheriff Carl Suta

Judge Jon Oldenburg ruled on Thursday that an injunction to halt the recall election of Pondera County Sheriff Carl Suta is valid.

Suta filed the injunction last month, and it was granted several days later.

The court ruling on Thursday means that the petition that was filed to initiate the recall is legally insufficient.

The injunction claims that the recall petition is "substantially out of compliance" with the requirements for such a petition.

The injunction states that the reasons for the recall are "insufficiently specific" as to the reason of the recall, citing "incompetence," and the material allegations are false. The injunction states that the allegations do not contain dates, times, or names of specific instances of said incompetence, and the judge agreed that there are no concrete examples on which to base the allegations.

The injunction also alleges that the originator of the recall petition, Stacy Welker, does not have personal knowledge of the allegations contained in the statement, and says that it will be "misleading to voters who will rely upon said allegations."

The injunction also says that Montana Code limits the explanation of a recall effort to 200 words, and  that the petition in this case is 251 words.

Stacy Welker, who filed the recall petition, tells MTN News that she does not plan to file another petition.


(NOVEMBER 7, 2017) Pondera County Sheriff Carl Suta has filed an injunction to stop a recall effort aimed at removing him from office.

The injunction states that the recall petition is "substantially out of compliance" with the requirements for such a petition.

The injunction states that the reasons for the recall are "insufficiently specific" as to the reason of the recall, citing "incompetence," and the material allegations are false. The injunction states that the allegations do not contain dates, times, or names of specific instances of said incompetence. 

The injunction also states that the originator of the recall petition, Stacy Welker, does not have personal knowledge of the allegations contained in the statement, and says that it will be "misleading to voters who will rely upon said allegations."

The request claims that it is "imperative that an injunction be granted so that the respondent (Pondera County elections administrator Kody Farkell) not be allowed to proceed with the printing of the ballots or the holding of a recall election."

Among the allegations against Suta in the recall petition:

  • "left the county unprotected by having only one officer on duty for the entire county countless times" 
  • "openly created dating profiles while married and cited sex as a hobby"
  • "has spoken openly about cases with multiple people in his presence"
  • "has created a hostile work environment"
  • is "not someone who takes responsibility for his actions"
  • "has abused his power by protecting his kids when they've committed offenses"

Scroll down to see the injunction request.

We will update you as we get more information.


 

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