Saturday, August 30, 2008

Would You Want This Man As A State Trooper?

The Democratic blogs have been abuzz that Gov. Sarah Palin is facing a state ethics probe for firing her public safety commissioner allegedly because he wouldn't fire a state trooper who was once married to one of her sisters. The Anchorage Daily News last month examined the state trooper in question, Mike Wooten, and uncovered some very troubling issues with his employment and personal conduct. Among the issues:

  • Wooten used a Taser on his stepson.
  • He illegally shot a moose.
  • He drank beer in his patrol car on one occasion.
  • He told others his father-in-law would "eat a f'ing lead bullet" if he helped his daughter get an attorney for the divorce.
  • A reprimand in January 2004 for negligent damage to a state vehicle.
  • A January 2005 instruction after being accused of speeding, unsafe lane changes, following too closely and not using turn signals in his state vehicle.
  • A June 2005 instruction regarding personal cell phone calls.
  • An October 2005 suspension from work after getting a speeding ticket.
  • A November 2005 memo "to clarify duty hours, tardiness and personal business during duty time."

The Anchorage Daily News reports notes that Wooten served on a SWAT-like team, which required a "cool-headed" officer to perform in crisis situations. The article makes clear that Wooten had some serious drinking problems and issues of domestic abuse towards Palin's sister. The alleged death threat against Palin's father if he hired a divorce attorney would have caused any normal person to have concerns about him serving as a state trooper. I think the Democrats are making a huge mistake if they intend to continue making Palin's alleged efforts to get this state trooper fired an issue in this campaign. As Rex Early would say, "That dog won't hunt."


Jon Easter said...

It is her own state that's investigating her. If she did everything correctly, she has nothing to worry about. I just find it odd that McCain would pick someone so young that is under a current investigation. Talk about Obama not being vetted? The country has had 18 months to get to know him. We have 8 weeks to get to know Sarah Palin. This is perhaps the most important Vice Presidential choice in history, and John McCain failed to show he has the judgment to lead by passing over so many talented Republicans...both women and men.

artfuggins said...

If all of the things that you allege are true [I dont know] then the Human Resources policies of the state and the state police would provide a procedure to dismiss this state trooper. It would not require email demands from governor and phone demands from the governor's husband. If guilty of what you write then he deserves to be using official channels.

mackenzie197 said...

AI, he sounds perfect as an IMPD cop. Do you think we could get him?

Gary R. Welsh said...

I suppose he could take Leon Benjamin's place.

Sean Shepard said...

"A January 2005 instruction after being accused of speeding, unsafe lane changes, following too closely and not using turn signals in his state vehicle. "

I thought they all did that, even when not on a run and certainly often with their lights off.

Anonymous said...

Why is this surprising? Democrats obviously don't care about corrupt cops with issues. Look at which local party was in charge when the current crop of officers now in trouble were hired.

Concerned Taxpayer said...

I don't know about you, jon, but my ballot didn't say, "vote for Barack Obama or Sara Palin."

And're right. There are "official" channels to get rid of bad cops. Just ask bart peterson.

You liberals are just so much fun!