*UPDATED* County Attorney Addresses Henry County Supervisors on Procedure and Expense Reports

The Henry County Attorney, Darin Stater, spoke in front of the Henry County Board of Supervisors on Thursday morning to discuss the handling of a criminal case which took place last spring in Henry County. There was disagreement between the Sheriff’s Office and the County Attorney on interpretation of a statement in the report. The county attorney did not pursue prosecution of the case and chose to place the officer mentioned on the Brady-Giglio list.

Because the County Attorney did not pursue the case further, Henry County Sheriff Rich McNamee spoke to the Henry County Supervisors and requested outside counsel on this case, which was something the county and Sheriff’s Department had done in the past on a number of cases. After their discussion, the Sheriff’s Department was operating under the assumption  they were given permission to pursue counsel. Furthermore, the Supervisors approved payments to the counsel totaling $3,200 between February 13 and May 21 of this year. However, County Attorney Stater explained to the Supervisors they did not follow proper procedure and file an official resolution with the assistance of the his office and therefore, they could not pay outside counsel as it was not approved properly. The County Attorney referenced a supreme court case from 2006, Stream vs Gordy, which proves to be similar to what was brought up at Thursday’s meeting.

It seems there was disconnect between the Board of Supervisors and the County Attorney on following procedure for expenditures, as one supervisor mentioned approval of these expenses even after County Attorney Stater said he advised against it in an email to the Supervisors in January. Stater mentioned that this is not a disagreement, but the law, and he asked for all three supervisors’ word that they would not approve future payments. He then assured them that he will look to get back onto the agenda as soon as possible and remain in contact.

While the Sheriff’s Department was working with outside counsel on the case over many months, Henry County Attorney Darin Stater also placed the deputy who wrote the report on this case on the Brady-Giglio list. According to the Iowa Legislature website, the Brady-Giglio list is a list compiled by a prosecutor’s office or a law enforcement agency containing the names and details of law enforcement officers who have sustained– confirmed– incidents of untruthfulness, criminal convictions, candor issues, or some other type of issue which places the officer’s credibility into question.

The deputy in question, Deputy Carlos Lopez, and Henry County Sheriff Rich McNamee asked Stater to reconsider and remove the deputy from the Brady-Giglio list. After allowing time for the Sheriff’s Department to provide additional information to the County Attorney’s office for reconsideration, Stater confirmed his decision to put the deputy on the Brady-Giglio list. It is important to note that Deputy Lopez remains a certified deputy in good standing with the Henry County Sheriff’s Department. His placement on this list does not charge him with any wrongdoing. County Attorney, Darin Stater, has sent the following information in response.  2024 Statement to KILJ re June 6 2024 BOS Meeting re Sheriff

*This article and headline were edited for clarity on 6/7/24 at 8:30 am.