Officials from the state attorney general's office may not be ready to confirm names, but an ongoing investigation into the Timpanogos Community Mental Health Center may soon result in new criminal charges in the case.
"Things are bubbling and happening and I suspect they will for awhile, but to confirm that someone is under investigation, I just don't want to do that," said John Clark, spokesman for Attorney General Paul Van Dam.According to Utah County Commissioner Brent Morris, Mike Hines, an investigator from the attorney general's office, has been in contact with county officials in the past few months and plans to subpoena some county records and employees for depositions.
But Clark said, "We have not publicly or privately discussed where this investigation may or may not be going. We have not told we would subpoena anyone. All that is coming from outside, and it may or may not be correct because these people do not know."
Contrary to some recent news reports, Clark said the investigation is not new but one that has been ongoing since the auditor general's office released a report two years ago saying that top center officials misused $3.5 million in public funds.
Craig Stephens, Carl Smith and Glen Brown are now serving terms in the Utah State Prison following the initial investigation.
The continuing investigation "very well might develop new leads or focus on people who were not targets heretofore, but we can't comment on that," Clark said. "We just have to ask the press and public to wait until we file charges. It is possible that new charges will be filed.
"Someone believes it is good to talk about this in the press, but we do not until the action takes place. It is not very responsible to speculate about criminal investigations."
Utah County plans to hire an outside attorney for the probe because "it is in the best interest of Utah County to have an attorney representing the county when its employees are interviewed and documents are requested. It's just proper to do that," said Commissioner Sid Sandberg.
Instead of using the resources of the county attorney's office, "We want an attorney who will be representing Utah County as a whole so that no one can sway things or direct them one way or another."
Morris, however, confirmed in recent news reports that Utah County Attorney Steve Killpack is one county officials under investigation. Killpack worked for the center before he was elected county attorney.