LeBrun details his view on jurisdiction, county attorney's role

May 28, 2014 By Eric Blom, Staff Writer

Fremont County attorney candidate Patrick LeBrun made a campaign stop at the May 5 meeting of the Fremont County Republican Women. The group made no decision about endorsing him, but individuals applauded some of LeBrun's remarks.

He emphasized his belief that the county attorney should not set policy but follow the direction other elected officials set.

"The people elect the county assessor to fairly assess property values ... the treasurer to keep their money safe ... commissioners to set fiscal policy and chart direction of the county ... and the sheriff to protect us," LeBrun said. "The people elect the county attorney to help all of those county officials do the best job they possibly can."

LeBrun resigned as chief deputy county attorney in April to run for the elected office. He had served in the county attorney's office since 2009, and, before he resigned, ran the Riverton wing of the agency.

"My job as the county attorney is to stay awake at night so you can sleep," LeBrun said.

He is running as a Republican and is set to square off with Fremont County Attorney Michael Bennett in the GOP primary in August. The winner would run in the general election in November.

LeBrun spoke to 13 Republican women at their lunch-hour meeting at the Bull and Bistro restaurant in Riverton.

LeBrun said Bennett does not follow the lead of other elected officials by saying he is the chief law enforcement officer in the county, for instance. The role of county attorney is simply to provide "sound judgment, thorough analysis and sound legal advice," LeBrun said.

Only one attendee had a question for LeBrun.

Lois Herbst asked about his stance on Bureau of Indian Affairs or other federal officers arresting non-tribal members on the Wind River Indian Reservation.

He said the Fremont County sheriff would be responsible for arresting those people. He further elaborated on his views regarding jurisdiction between federal and local law enforcement.

"When it's crimes that occur exclusively within the state, whether it's on (Bureau of Land Management) land or not, it's the sheriff that makes the decision (to arrest a person)," LeBrun said.

LeBrun also suggested all federal lands should be turned over to the state, a remark that drew applause.

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