Sheriff files civil suit against County Clerk
by Pinedale Online!
September 1, 2015
On Monday, August 31st, the Sublette County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) issued a press release announcing that Sublette County Sheriff Stephen Haskell has filed a civil court action against Sublette County Clerk Mary Lankford.
Sheriff Haskell filed a Petition for Writ of Mandamus, which is a court order that requires another court, government official, public body, corporation, or individual to perform a certain act. Sheriff Haskell’s civil complaint was filed in District Court in Pinedale on Friday, August 28th by Lander-based attorney James Whiting, whom the media release stated Sheriff Haskell has retained on a private basis. Haskell is bringing forth the court action acting in his official capacity as Sheriff of Sublette County against Mary Lankford in her official capacity as County Clerk for Sublette County.
According to the release, Sheriff Haskell is alleging that County Clerk Lankford "is seeking by her actions to assume the role of administering the Sheriff’s Office." His complaint relates to budget administration, employee hiring and personnel matters, and grant administration authority.
Sheriff Haskell is asking the court to make a number of findings that the County Clerk is operating outside the scope of her authority of office and what is authorized by statute.
The media release was sent to local and state-wide newspapers, TV, radio and other media. In response to a request for comment, County Clerk Mary Lankford said she had no statement at this time.
It is unclear at this time how this legal action will proceed within the court system, who will represent whom, and who will pay for the two sides of the legal representation as this action moves forward.