A sheriff and two deputies were arrested Thursday after allegedly conspiring to help a friend kidnap his own daughter, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
“The fact that we arrested one of our own sent shock waves through the [Missouri Sheriffs Association] conference,” Washington County, Missouri Sheriff Zach Jacobsen told the outlet.
Iron County, Missouri Sheriff Jeff Burkett and a pair of his deputies stand accused of scheming to help Donald Gaston kidnap his own daughter. The quartet are charged with organized, joint criminal activity under a “street gang” statute in addition to other individual charges, NBC News reported.
“These charges are 100% politically motivated,” Burkett’s lawyer, Gabe Crocker, told the Post-Dispatch. “It’s simply another chapter in the long-term effort to remove the outsider sheriff.”
Jacobsen then asked the Missouri Highway Patrol to conduct the investigation. Washington County’s prosecutor brought the charges, the outlet also explained.