Focus of tonight's special meeting is internal probe into former detective



Ken Johnson

Craig Police Chief Walt Vanatta is scheduled to speak to the Craig City Council at a special meeting tonight about an internal investigation into former detective Ken Johnson.

The meeting will start at 7:30 p.m. at Craig City Hall, 300 W. Fourth St., and is open to the public.

Johnson, who served with the police department for nine years before resigning Sept. 9, is charged in Moffat County Court with attempting to influence a public servant, a Class 4 felony; accessory to crime, a Class 5 felony; and embezzlement of public property, a Class 5 felony.

He was arrested Sept. 29, after an investigation by the 14th Judicial District Attorney's Office.

An internal police investigation of Johnson's behavior in March was inconclusive. Johnson was suspended without pay, but no criminal charges were filed and he was allowed to resume working.

Vanatta's presentation to the council tonight mostly will be about his department's investigation.

Prosecutors say Johnson lied to his superiors during the police investigation and coerced others to lie on his behalf, which is the basis for his first felony charge.

The other two charges against Johnson are based on evidence alleging he shared confidential law enforcement information with resident Tausha Merwin and gave her a laptop computer owned by police.

Johnson is suspected of having had a sexual relationship with Merwin.

According to arrest warrant affidavits filed with the court, Johnson gave Merwin information about ongoing police investigations and the names of confidential informants, which she later shared with drug offenders.


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