OGDEN -- Handling three major cases at the same time is having an impact on the Weber County Attorney's Office. "We're maxed out," Weber County Attorney Dee Smith said of the drain of three major investigations under way simultaneously.
A Pineview Reservoir swimmer killed by a boat in August was followed by a North Ogden teen missing in September and becoming a homicide in October. Then six officers were shot, one fatally, in an Ogden drug raid Jan. 4.
"This has been crazy," Smith said. "I haven't seen anything like this before, all piled up on each other."
The massive investigation of the Jan. 4 shootings comes as probes were winding down in the two other cases.
In the case of potential charges against Dea and Eric Millerberg in the death of North Ogden teen Alexis Rasmussen, Smith said, "We were close to making some decisions before everything that's happened in the last two weeks. We had to deal with the shootings immediately, right then."
Smith spoke to reporters after a Wednesday hearing for Dea Millerberg, 38, on drug charges unrelated to Rasmussen's death. Trial in her drug case was set for May 24-25.
Smith still could not offer a time frame on filing of charges relating to the teen's death. Rasmussen was baby-sitting for the Millerbergs when she disappeared.
"Everyone who law enforcement is aware of as having involvement has been interviewed," Smith said. But that could change tomorrow, he added, as new information becomes available.
But some investigative work and reports still need to be completed in the Rasmussen case, he said. Most of the toxicology testing has been done, although the State Crime Lab had to send some of the work to out-of-state labs.
"It's been complicated because of the time lapse between the disappearance and the discovery of the body," Smith said.
He declined comment on whether the state Medical Examiner's Office has determined Rasmussen's cause of death. That information will be shared with the family first, he said, before it's released publicly.
Smith and Deputy Weber County Attorney Branden Miles said a number of trials are pending involving arrests made by strike force officers who are on paid administrative leave as the investigation into the Jan. 4 shootings continues.
Miles said quite a few cases involving strike force agent Jared Francom, who was killed in the shooting, are also pending.
"We're just dealing with it as the cases come up," he said.
The strike force's resulting manpower shortage has forced it to use former strike force officers to keep current investigations going, Smith said.
"They made a 2-pound meth bust this weekend. The law is still being enforced."
Lt. Darin Parke, strike force commander, said eight of his agents are on leave pending the completion of the investigation, as required by policy.
That is not the entire strike force, he said.
"But it's such a high number, it might as well be."
Parke said he has also borrowed personnel from the Davis Metro Narcotics Strike Force -- twice last week -- and the statewide DEA drug task force.
He said he has been given no firm estimate on when he'll have all of his officers back, but "going by past history, I expect it will be a couple more weeks."
Parke said that Kasey Burrell, the last officer still hospitalized, is now talking after being in a medically induced coma at one point.
As to Francom's pending cases, Parke said, no case is dependent on one officer.
"We'll still be able to prosecute the cases that are in the system," he said, noting the cases involving the officers on leave easily number dozens.
"This shooting was extremely rare," Parke said. "Most police shootings statistically last less than seven seconds with less than seven rounds fired."
Such data comes from the FBI's annual report on law enforcement officers killed and assaulted, he said.
"It fluctuates, but basically you have one police officer murdered every three days in the U.S.," he said. "And we lose as many in traffic accidents as murders."
Smith said investigators are still working on the Pineview boating fatality. University of Utah researcher Esther Fujimoto, 49, was killed Aug. 21 when she was hit by a powerboat in the Spring Creek area of the reservoir.
Weber County sheriff's deputies have seized the boat believed to have struck the woman. Deputies have identified its owner and two men who were in the boat with him. Witnesses have said the boat stopped after the woman was hit, those onboard called out to her, and the boat then left the scene.
Rasmussen disappeared Sept. 10 while baby-sitting at the Millerbergs' house. Her body was found Oct. 18 in a shallow grave in Morgan County. Dea Millerberg has been free on $15,000 bail since Dec. 6.
Eric Millerberg, 36, has been sent back to prison for a drug-related probation violation unrelated to Rasmussen's death.