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Corrections chief disbands elite bureau

Utah Corrections director Pete Haun announced more changes for the department Thursday afternoon.

Haun announced he will disband the department's elite investigations bureau. He will keep about 10 officers and support staff in the executive office to collect intelligence information, but the other 17 or so officers will go back to work either in the prison or to jobs as probation and parole agents."There was some duplicity," Haun said. "A lot of information was being developed at lower levels (which had to be passed onto investigators). They can do all the things they were doing and more by decentralizing."

He said he hopes the change will put investigators closer to the information and its sources. Officers will still participate in multijurisdictional task forces and will still interact with local law enforcement agencies on joint investigations.

Haun anticipates some won't be happy about the move, but he believes it will make them more effective and save the department money.

Personnel problems will still be investigated by internal affairs-type officers, but when possible criminal allegations surface, Haun wants another police agency to investigate.

"We're trying to eliminate the perception of conflicts," he said.

Haun said administrators who pay investigators' salaries will now have supervision over how they spend their time.

"We're using them in a more diversified way," he said.

Haun believes the reorganization is "more cost effective, more efficient."

"We'll monitor it very closely, and if it doesn't work, we'll try something else," he said.