News / Utah / 

Ex-police officer gets jail time after pleading guilty to attempted bribery charge

By Emiley Morgan | Posted - Apr 11th, 2013 @ 7:07pm



OGDEN — A former Perry police officer has been sentenced to jail and probation for trying to bribe a Utah Highway Patrol trooper for help in a DUI case.

Daniel J. Kotter, 35, was ordered to spend 90 days in jail followed by three years' probation for attempted extortion or bribery to dismiss a criminal proceeding, a third-degree felony.

Kotter pleaded guilty to the charge in November, which was reduced from a second-degree felony and could lead to an additional reduction if he successfully completes probation.

Second District Judge Michael Lyon also ordered Kotter to pay a $603 fine and will allow him to participate in work release.

Matthew Scott Jones, 35, a former Ogden police officer, was charged with DUI, a class B misdemeanor, in August 2011, two days after being pulled over by a UHP trooper, according to court documents.

After Jones' arrest, Kotter sent a text message to the trooper and asked "to talk," court documents state. The trooper spoke with Kotter over the phone, and Kotter allegedly offered him $1,000 if he would not appear at an upcoming Driver License Division hearing for Jones, his friend.

The bribe increased to $2,500 during the conversation, after it was revealed that Jones' blood-alcohol level had been about .15 — nearly twice the legal limit — and Kotter said the money could be classified as "a Christmas bonus," according to court documents.

Jones had apparently applied for a job that required him to have a commercial driver's license, which wouldn't be possible to obtain with a DUI on his record.

The trooper missed the Sept. 13, 2011, hearing and Kotter met with him afterward and handed over $2,000. Kotter was arrested after driving away from the encounter.

Kotter, who was working part-time for the Perry Police Department, was terminated in October of that year, city officials said. He had been with the department just a few weeks.

Jones had his peace officer certification revoked in 2007 after Utah's Police Officer Standards and Training found he engaged in a pattern of misconduct.

Jones pleaded guilty to a charge of attempted extortion or bribery to dismiss a criminal proceeding, a second-degree felony. Court records show his charge could also be reduced after successful completion of probation. He is scheduled to be sentenced April 29.

Related Stories

Emiley Morgan

KSL Weather Forecast

Updated: Saturday September 22, 2018 10:33 pm