BY MELINDA WILLIAMS and REBECCA PALMER
Clipper Staff Writer
SALT LAKE CITY — A former Davis County deputy attorney is accusing his former boss, Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings of threats, intimidation and wrongful dismissal.
Tyler James Larsen, who served in the county attorney’s office from Nov. 30 2007 until Sept. 8, 2010, is suing Rawlings and the county for $1 million, damages and attorney’s fees and is asking to be reinstated to his former position with the county.
Also named in the suit are all county commissioners and Davis County Career Service Councilmembers.
Both sides are asking for a jury trial.
In the suit, Larsen makes several allegations:
“The most egregious violation was defendants concealing and tampering with evidence,” the filing states. Larsen also accuse Rawlings of repeatedly violating the Davis County Merit System Ordinance and repeatedly violating the Davis County Personnel Policies and procedures.
Larsen is facing his own complaint in 2nd District Court, filed by the Utah State Bar’s Office of Professional Conduct for unprofessional conduct.
In the complaint, Todd Wahlquist, deputy senior counsel for the office, asks for disciplinary action against Larsen and that Larsen pay the costs of prosecuting him.
On Wednesday, Rawlings declined to comment, referring inquiries to Salt Lake City attorney Jesse Trentadue who is representing the county. Trentadue forwarded some documentation to the Clipper, but was unavailable for comment.
Davis County Commissioner John Petroff also declined to comment, as he is named in the suit.
In the federal court case, Larsen accuses Rawlings of retaliating against him after Rawlings intervened in a case regarding a private probation provider.
She was Rawling's* former employee, said an evidentiary document he filed.
Larsen allegedly lied to the judge about the amount a defendant had paid her, according to Wahlquist’s complaint.
The matter was investigated by the Davis County Attorney’s Office, the Weber County Attorney’s Office and the State of Utah.
Larsen’s complaint goes on to say that Rawlings discriminated against him because he wasn’t a Republican, and that the office was a hostile work environment when it came to Larsen’s other political views. In one email about same-sex marriage, Rawlings’ Chief Deputy William McGuire wrote to him, “then you’re a queer,” according to the complaint.
Larsen also alleges that Rawlings kept him from high paying assignments, that Rawlings has a policy to dismiss all charges against Hill AFB personnel and that Rawlings improperly had speeding tickets reduced for his family members.
In turn, Wahlquist’s complaint alleged that Larsen once showed a witness in an armed robbery a picture of only one man, the defendant in the case. That resulted in a mistrial.
Click here to download Larsen's federal complaint and here to read more evidentiary documentation about it.
The Clipper also collected documents representing the county attorney's office. Click here to read the unprofessional conduct complaint, and here to read Larsen's counterclaim.
*This article has been corrected to show the factual relationship between the probation worker and the parties involved in their lawsuit.