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County Hires Representation For Attorney Complaint

Roosevelt County has hired a law firm to represent the county in the case regarding attorney Janet Christoffersen.

The law firm of Smith, Oblander, Meade and Mitcham has been hired by the county to represent the county. The law firm has filed a request to substitute District Judge David Cybulski. The motion was filed on Aug. 15.

Christoffersen, who was removed by the Roosevelt County Commissioners from the position of county attorney at the end of June, filed a complaint against the county Aug. 4.

Christoffersen is seeking a declaration from the court that she remains the Roosevelt County Attorney because commissioners don’t have the authority to remove her from office.

She is requesting a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction barring Roosevelt County from any action prohibiting her from performing the duties of Roosevelt County Attorney.

The county has 21 days to respond to the complaint from when the complaint was officially served.

A summons was served to one of the commissioners on Aug. 4.

In the court filing, it’s argued that there’s no legal avenue for commissioners to force such a removal. The document states, “under the law, as the appointed county attorney, Christoffersen could only be removed from the position of county attorney upon certain circumstances pursuant to certain processes. Those circumstances do not exist and no process was followed.”

The court documents noted that she was installed as the Roosevelt County Attorney by appointment and not pursuant to a single employer/ employee relationship or as an independent contractor. There was never any contract between the parties, her appointment was done pursuant to governing statues. “Importantly, the Roosevelt County Commission did not hire, employ, or contract with the plaintiff. The Roosevelt County Commission appointed the plaintiff to the position of Roosevelt County Attorney.”

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