Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters turns herself in on misdemeanor warrant, released

Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters turned herself in Thursday morning to the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office.

Peters paid a $500 bond for a misdemeanor warrant alleging obstruction of a peace officer, and she was released, according to sheriff’s office spokesperson Megan Terlecky. The Mesa County District Attorney’s Office also charged Peters with misdemeanor obstructing government operations.

Grand Junction police had issued a warrant for Peters’ arrest on Wednesday, following a confrontation with officers Tuesday at Main Street Bagels. Officers were assisting Mesa County District Attorney’s Office investigators who were attempting to execute a search warrant and obtain an iPad that belonged to Peters.

But according to police arrest documents, Peters resisted officers and attempted to kick one of them while the search was conducted. She was released that day, but prosecutors filed charges the following day.

The search warrant that spurred the incident alleged that the Republican county clerk may have used an iPad to record a criminal court hearing for Deputy Clerk Belinda Knisley against a judge’s order.

Peters allegedly denied that the iPad obtained by investigators belonged to her and had previously said in court that she was not recording. Her legal defense team said they were assessing options for how to proceed against what they considered “excessive force” by police.

Terlecky said the arrest on Thursday morning was uneventful and that Peters used a process that is available to anyone during business hours to turn themselves in to authorities, immediately pay their bond, get booking photos and fingerprints and get paperwork processed before they are released. She was never placed in custody in jail.

Peters is expected to appear in court for an arraignment at 8 a.m. March 2.

The clerk has been the subject of multiple investigations since last year over allegations of an election security breach in her office. She has become popular with 2020 election deniers and conspiracy theorists who, without evidence, say the 2020 election was stolen from former President Donald Trump.

A grand jury is investigating allegations of election equipment tampering and official misconduct. The secretary of state has also filed multiple lawsuits against Peters, including one that resulted in a judge barring Peters and Knisley from overseeing the 2021 election. The secretary of state is seeking a similar outcome in a lawsuit for the 2022 election after Peters said she wouldn’t sign election security protocols or recant statements about Dominion Voting Systems machines. Peters is also facing ethics and campaign finance violations.

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