Weber Sheriff's candidate stays in race despite losing job with sheriff's office

Wednesday , April 11, 2018 - 5:15 AM4 comments

OGDEN — Weber County sheriff candidate Kevin Burns says his campaign will go on, despite his job at the sheriff’s office ending after a major breach in the agency’s handling of evidence.

“The campaign is moving forward,” Burns said Tuesday, April 10. “I have retired from the sheriff’s office.”

In a press release Monday night, the sheriff’s office said an internal investigation determined Burns failed to act on repeated complaints by detectives, crime scene technicians, sheriff’s deputies and county prosecutors about problems in the evidence room, which he supervised.

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On Dec. 8, an evidence technician was found intoxicated in the evidence room. She later admitted to consuming methamphetamine taken from 15-20 criminal case files and was fired effective Jan. 12.

Burns, then a lieutenant, later was promoted to chief deputy over the corrections division.

“As a result of the findings of the internal investigation, the supervisor’s employment with the Weber County Sheriff’s Office has ended,” the county press release said.

It said Burns “violated multiple policies during his supervision of the evidence room.”

The statement said the transgressions included “neglect of duty, failure to supervise, failure to report incompetent work, omitting information and failure to report information to a supervisor, failure to report misconduct by an employee, failure to report damage to the evidence room and disparaging remarks about fellow staff.”

Burns on Tuesday declined to discuss the matter, citing the Weber County Attorney’s Office’s ongoing criminal investigation.

Burns said he has retained an attorney and will respond to the allegations at some point.

Asked about his prospects in the sheriff’s race, Burns said, “It’s a campaign, so it’s really hard to tell. All I can do is tell my story and my message and move forward.”

Burns is one of five Republicans running for the post. The others are Ryan Arbon of North Ogden, Perry’s police chief; Troy Arrowsmith, an Ogden Police Department sergeant; Matthew Bell, a former county commissioner; and David MacInnes, a county sheriff’s sergeant.

You can reach reporter Mark Shenefelt at mshenefelt@standard.net. Follow him on Twitter at @mshenefelt and like him on Facebook at Facebook.com/SEmarkshenefelt. 

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