From Kyle Hopkins in Anchorage --
Word just came from the Senate -- former state assistant D.A. Steve Branchflower will handle the investigation of Gov. Sarah Palin's firing of Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan.
Here's the announcement:
Former State Prosecutor Steve Branchflower
to Investigate Personnel Issues
(JUNEAU) – Today Legislative Council Chair Kim Elton announced the appointment of former Alaska Assistant District Attorney Steve Branchflower as Special Counsel to conduct the Council’s investigation into the events surrounding the dismissal of former Alaska Department of Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan. Branchflower had a long and distinguished career in the criminal justice field as a prosecutor, police instructor and advocate for victims rights. Mr. Branchflower was the first person appointed to head the Alaska Office Of Victims’ Rights.
“Steve Branchflower is a highly respected prosecutor and public servant,” said Senator Hollis French, Project Director for the Council’s review. “If there were wrongs committed, he will find them. If there were not, he has the professional experience and good judgment to say so.”
“Alaskans are calling for a complete and fair investigation into why Walt Monegan was fired and if it had anything to do with Trooper Mike Wooten,” said Legislative Council Chair Kim Elton. “Mr. Branchflower is well known in legal circles and I am confident he will conduct his review in a professional, unbiased, independent, nonpolitical manner.”
The Legislative Council approved an appropriation of up to $100,000 dollars for the investigation. Mr. Branchflower will begin work immediately. Senator French and Senator Elton expect the investigation to be completed in a few months. A copy of Mr. Branchflower’s resume is included with this news release.