Posted: Jun 29, 2012 1:22 AM by MTN News
Updated: Jun 29, 2012 1:23 AM
MISSOULA - In response to the U.S. Department of Justice's investigation into whether the University of Montana and city of Missoula appropriately handled sexual assault reports, the Missoula County Attorney said he feels the department is overstepping its jurisdiction.
County Attorney Fred Van Valkenburg said the justice department made one request for his office to send information on sexual assault cases from the last four years, and asked for documents regarding his office's policies, training and organizational structure.
Van Valkenburg said the justice department doesn't have the authority to investigate prosecuting attorneys' offices.
"I think they're a bunch of bullies," Van Valkenburg said. "They're trying to force their way to do something because they're the big United States government and somebody needs to stand up to them and tell them that they are not entitled to this."
Van Valkenburg said his office didn't do anything wrong and the attorneys there work hard to protect the community.
He said the federal agents came in relying on their authority to investigate law enforcement agencies, but his office doesn't fall into that category.
Van Valkenburg said his office is accountable to the Missoula community, not the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division.