Yeah whoever had this on their 2022 elections Bingo card...well, congratulations, you hit the long odds:
Utah County Attorney David Leavitt is calling for an investigation of Sheriff Mike Smith's handling of allegations involving "ritualistic sex abuse."
Leavitt called a press conference Wednesday morning after the Utah County Sheriff's Office told the media the night prior that it is investigating a child sex abuse ring that operated in Utah, Juab, and Sanpete counties between 1990 and 2010.
At the press conference, Leavitt announced that he and his wife were subjects of a child sex abuse investigation approximately 10 years ago, but claimed those allegations were totally untrue.
Oh these allegations go back... they go back 10 years. Okay then.
To be fair, it sounds like this whole thing may have stemmed from a mentally ill individual's accusations:
Leavitt called the victim of the case ‘tragically mentally ill' and dismissed that he or his wife had ever participated in ritual child sex abuse.
"To have [my wife's] reputation, her professional character and everything about her life's work called into question brought into question by a few cheap political opportunists offends me to the depth of my being. It does nothing but to demean the integrity of me, my wife, and 15 other members of this community who had absolutely nothing to do with a discredited case from 15 years ago," Leavitt said
Leavitt said the woman's allegations named "15 to 20" other people and that the case was debunked. ...
But wait: The sheriff has weighed in, too.
At a hastily-called press conference Wednesday afternoon, Sheriff Smith said Leavitt has his facts wrong.
Smith said the ritual sex abuse investigation involves more than just the case where Leavitt said he and his wife were accused.
"Several times, Mr. Leavitt named himself and mentioned cannibalism and murder. This investigation is about child sex abuse," Smith said. "I take exception to any victim coming forward and being categorized as ‘tragically mentally ill'. How dare you. These are victims of crimes who have mustered the courage to come forward and this is what you call them? Mentally ill. How dare you."
Everybody in Utah County right about now probably feeling like:
Look, all of this is insanely weird. But don't worry, it gets even weirder: Apparently there's a possibility that this whole thing was put into play by... a rape suspect from out-of-state:
Smith denied accusations by Leavitt that a Utah County Sheriff's Office sergeant had confirmed to Zeus Z24, a website that claims to be an online news site, that Leavitt and his wife were being investigated in the ritual sex abuse ring.
The Utah County Attorney's Office alleges Zeus Z24 is run by rape suspect Nicholas Rossi, who is currently fighting extradition back to Utah.
Leavitt admitted in his press conference that Rossi, who allegedly goes by the name Arthur Knight, could have fabricated the so-called 'exclusive confirmation' by the Utah County Sheriff's Office that the Leavitts were 'primary suspects' in the investigation.
Okay this is getting really weird.
Actually no, I don't want to dig any deeper into this. I'm just gonna let local Utah media handle it, thanks.
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