Carbon County Sheriff Barry Bryner, who admitted last week to lies and sexual misconduct, was expelled Thursday from membership in the Utah Sheriff's Association and encouraged to resign.
"The Utah Sheriff's Association will not tolerate the degradation of this office by any member," said Duchesne County Sheriff Clair Poulson, president of the association."We abhor his admitted actions and want to publicly state that we owe the public the very best example by ourselves and the most professional law enforcement by our departments," he said following the association's monthly meeting.
With the exception of Bryner, every county sheriff in the state belongs to the "brotherhood organization" that unanimously voted to expel Bryner - the first time it has disavowed one of its own. Poulson said members of the association met with the sheriff several months ago to advise him, but he would not listen.
"I would hate to have that brotherhood removed from me," Poulson said.
The Peace Officers Standards and Training Council is still investigating allegations against the sheriff in a decertification case. Bryner continues to serve as sheriff, but members of the Utah Sheriff's Association hope their action will encourage him to resign.
"His current conduct is not becoming of a law enforcement officer and I think he should consider (resigning)," said Cache County Sheriff Sid Groll, the association's president-elect.
"This is the only thing we can do. I hope it makes a statement," Poulson said of the expulsion. "I would think that if I committed that kind of conduct . . . I would have stepped down long ago."
Bryner could not be reached for comment.
During a Feb. 8 public hearing in the decertification case, Bryner admitted he had an affair with a dispatcher and then lied about it to investigators. The sheriff is also accused of making false statements to his superiors and dispatchers regarding his location, making false entries on law enforcement logs, and misusing public money.
"The Utah sheriffs adhere to the Peace Officers Code of Conduct and strongly believe in running our office by the highest ethical standards. Sheriff Bryner has degraded those standards and has been an embarrassment to the sheriffs and law enforcement of the state of Utah by inappropriate actions both personally and professionally," Poulson said.