City could pay up to $60,000 for grand jury costs |

City could pay up to $60,000 for grand jury costs

Judges ask city for special prosecutor

By Amanda Hammon

Because the Carson City District Attorney’s Office is named in an upcoming grand jury investigation, district judges Michael Griffin and Bill Maddox are asking the city to hire a special prosecutor, probably from Washoe County.

A grand jury was ordered in October to look into allegations of misconduct by several city officials. District Attorney Noel Waters, Chief Deputy District Attorney Anne Langer and other city officials are named in the grand jury petition.

Griffin said Monday the grand jury is two volunteer jurors away from convening in a case that could cost the city as much as $60,000.

“I don’t think it’s going to be anywhere near that much,” Griffin said. “That’s the worst case scenario.”

He said he didn’t know how much Washoe County would charge for a prosecutor in the case. Money for the grand jury investigation would have to come from the city’s $200,000 contingency fund.

The city’s last grand jury investigation, impaneled for 18 months starting in January 1997, cost roughly $34,000.

The petition to convene a grand jury was filed in August by Rolland Weddell with 5,422 signatures. Of those, 4,435 signatures were verified by the Carson clerk’s office.

Accusations in the petition include:

– Waters is accused of removing a criminal complaint from a courtroom.

– Langer is accused of coaching witnesses.

– Justice of the Peace Robey Willis is accused of removing a complaint from the courtroom.

– Deputy sheriffs Steve Johnson, Ken Sandage, Bill Callahan, Fred Schoenfeldt and Rod King are accused of obstructing prosecution of the case.

Brothers James and John Bustamonte are also named with allegations of drug trafficking, kidnapping and assault.

The petition stems from an October 1997 incident in which Weddell, attempting a citizen’s arrest, fired four shots at a fleeing James Bustamonte. He claims the arrest attempt was made in response to an attempt by Bustamonte and his brother to run down an employee of Weddell’s at an Arrowhead Drive construction yard.

If you go:

What: the Carson City Board of Supervisors

When: 8:30 a.m., Thursday

Where: the Community Center’s Sierra Room, 851 E. William St.

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