UNIVERSITY OF UTAH – The University of Utah officer fired for alleged “dereliction of duty” is pushing back on the claims made by the school’s police department. Her attorneys say school officials fired her to protect the U’s reputation.
University of Utah officials released documents stating Kayla Dallof didn’t quickly take action while investigating a case of a student holding his girlfriend hostage in his dorm room. They also state Dallof went home after hearing a threatening voicemail instead of making an arrest.
Her attorney, Jonathan Thorne, says those claims are completely false. He says his client went to her sergeant’s office to report the voicemail immediately after she heard it.
“He wasn’t there, so she pulled out her cell phone and texted him, saying, ‘You need to listen to this voicemail,’ and he didn’t respond. So, she went back a couple minutes later and said, ‘You need to listen to this voicemail,’” Thorne says.
Why wasn’t there a speedy arrest? Thorne says the case was a lot more complicated than just one person making a claim of a threat. The suspect, Nicholas Isaiah McGee, claimed he was being extorted by the victim. Thorne says Dallof asked her bosses what she should do.
“She relayed it to her sergeant and they decided not to arrest the guy. They decided to continue with the investigation,” he says.
Thorne also claims the decision to arrest McGee was also made by her superiors.
He says, “As soon as they made that decision, Officer Dallof returned immediately to work and arrested the guy, shortly thereafter.”
Thorne believes Dallof’s firing isn’t actually about McGee’s arrest. He thinks it’s residual punishment for the Lauren McCluskey killing, and that the university is trying to save face.
“I don’t think there’s any other reason she was fired, but for that case. She wasn’t disciplined related to that, and I think they needed a scapegoat,” he says.
Meanwhile, Dallof already has another job in law enforcement. She now works for the Weber County Sheriff’s Office. They issued a statement, saying…
“The Weber County Sheriff’s Office would like to confirm the hiring of Deputy Kayla Dallof. After a thorough and complete background investigation, the Weber County Sheriff’s Office made the decision to hire Kayla Dallof as a sworn peace officer. The Weber County Sheriff’s Office background process involves many aspects and a thorough review of all employment history, Utah Peace Officer Standard and Training records as well as all criminal and financial history.
The Weber County Sheriff’s Office stands behind our decision in hiring Kayla and supports her in continuing her career as a law enforcement officer. Since hiring Kayla, she has excelled here at the sheriff’s office in her duties and we look forward to seeing her to continue her success in her career here at the Weber County Sheriff’s Office.”
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