Utah lawmaker seen on body cam footage trying to ‘intimidate’ police so they wouldn’t arrest his son
A Utah lawmaker has been caught on body-camera footage arguing with police officers after they arrested his son.
San Juan County Commissioner Bruce Adams was seen on video obtained by KUTV getting furious with Sheriff’s deputies despite being afforded access to view the warrant that prompted the arrest of his son Kenneth Adams.
The altercation took place after Mr Adams went to retrieve a vehicle after his son had been arrested after a traffic stop in late November last year.
Deputy Wyatt Holyoak said in a police report that Mr Adams approached officers saying “that he wanted to see the ‘motherf***ing warrant right away’”.
The deputy wrote that he told Mr Adams that he “could not show him personal returns on my computer”.
Mr Adams “replied that I better show him the God damn warrant right away”.
Deputy Holyoak wrote that it “appeared” to him as if Mr Adams “was trying to use his influence as a County Commissioner to intimidate me into showing him information that I was not permitted to do”.
The deputy spoke to his boss and received permission to allow Mr Adams to view the warrant on the computer in order to “help de-escalate the situation,” the report stated.
The commissioner continued to argue with the officer, saying “I want you to turn him loose”.
When the deputy said he was unable to do so because of the valid warrant, Mr Adams appeared to threaten legal action.
“Do you want me to sue the son-of-a-b**** county sheriff because he arrested my kid on a false warrant?” Mr Adams said.
“The warrant’s right there,” the deputy said.
After leaving, Mr Adams then called the sheriff’s office’s lead investigator Alan Freestone to complain again. Mr Freestone contacted a court clerk and verified the warrant’s validity.
Jason Torgerson, the sheriff at the time, joined Mr Freestone at the office of the commissioner in Salt Lake City to speak to Mr Adams regarding his “lack of professionalism,” according to KUTV.
After accusing the deputy of lying about him and refusing to watch the bodycam footage, Mr Adams is now backtracking.
“It’s embarrassing. It’s embarrassing for me to act that way,” he told KUTV on Thursday. “I feel bad that I did that. But I was emotional.”
“In my opinion, I was acting as a father,” he argued but admitted that he “absolutely” should be acting in accordance with his role as commissioner.
He still argued that at the time he believed the warrant, which is connected to burglary and theft allegations stemming from 2020 to which his son pleaded guilty, to be invalid.
The warrant was dropped after Kenneth Adams provided several required documents. He told KUTV that he thought at the time that everything was in order regarding his probation.
“I was in compliance with everything I was supposed to be in compliance with,” he said. “I think my dad was just beyond frustrated.”
He called the allegations that Mr Adams used his position to intimidate the officer “absolutely ridiculous”.
“My dad takes his office very seriously, dude. Like, very seriously,” he told KUTV.