Trooper-Gate Trooper Breaks Silence

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September 5, 2008 12:30 p.m.
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CNN caught up earlier today with Alaska State Trooper Mike Wooten, the former brother-in-law of Sarah Palin, who is at the center of Trooper-Gate.

Wooten doesn’t appear to have spoken publicly since his name became the focus of the investigation involving the firing of Alaska Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan, who claimed he was terminated by Palin after he refused to fire Wooten.

Wooten has been embroiled in a bitter dispute with the Palin family since a messy 2005 divorce from Palin’s sister Molly McCann. In 2005, complaints were filed against Wooten to the state troopers which resulted in an internal investigation of Wooten. Thirteen charges were investigated and four were ultimately found to have merit. Those included charges that he tasered his 11 year-old stepson, shot a moose out of season, drove drunk in his trooper car and threatened to “put a bullet in [the] f***ing brain” of Palin’s father.

Wooten received a 10-day suspension from the force as a result of the findings, which was shortened to 5 days after advocacy from the troopers union.

Yesterday, the troopers union filed an ethics complaint against Palin for improperly accessing Wooten’s personnel record. In her defense Palin states that she received information on Wooten from the divorce proceedings, which Wooten had made public by signing a waiver.

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