UPDATE – Van Valkenburg Calls for County Attorney to Apologize to Him and to Attorney General’s Office Regarding Investigation
UPDATE Wednesday, July 27 2:00 p.m.
Former Missoula County Attorney Fred Van Valkenburg is calling on current County Attorney Kirsten Pabst to apologize to him and to the Attorney General's office for 'wasting their time' by investigating his retrieval of personal items from a secure storage room in the county administration building in May.
"I think it was some bad judgement on the part of Kirsten Pabst, the current county attorney to publicly talk about this," Van Valkenburg said. "She could have simply called me on the phone and asked me about it at the time. For whatever reason, she wanted to try and create some controversy when she had her press conference, or sent out her news release on this matter."
Van Valkenburg is asking for an apology.
"I think at this point, she ought to apologize, not only to me, but to the attorney general's office and the Division of Criminal Investigation for wasting their time having to go through this matter. It's just inappropriate. I hope she'll issue an apology, and if she does, I'll accept it and we'll just put the matter behind us."
The Missoula County Attorney's office has not issued a statement on the matter as of 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday.
The Montana Department of Justice has cleared former Missoula County Attorney Fred Van Valkenbug of any criminal activity for removing personal items from a secure storage room in the Missoula County Administration Building.
According to the report, Agent Anthony Pippler and Chief John Strandell with the Montana Department of Justice, no crime took place when Van Valkenburg, accompanied by Karol Jedrykowski were granted access to the secure storage room by Missoula County Facilities Manager Larry Farnes, who granted them permission after contacting Dorothy Brownlow, a legal adviser to the Missoula County Commissioners..
The report continues by stating that Smalley escorted Van Valkenburg and Jedrykowski into the room, where they observed six to eight boxes on a shelf with Van Valkenburg's name on them. Van Valkenburg located the box he was looking for, and before leaving, he opened the box and showed Smalley the contents, which appeared to be personal items. Smalley then escorted the two men out of the file room.
The report concludes by stating that the investigation did not reveal anything other than Van Valkenburg's personal items being removed from the room, and that no crime took place.
KGVO News has reached out to Van Valkenburg, and is awaiting a return call. County Attorney Kirsten Pabst was informed of the report, and will comment at a later time.