Police brutality case settled in Millard County

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The case against a Millard County sheriff's deputy has been settled.

A few months ago, we first brought you the story of a Fillmore man who says he was slammed to the ground by the deputy, even after he was handcuffed.

The case was settled just a few weeks ago. The Fillmore man, Ty Pikyavit, will get $25,000 from the county. The sheriff's office admits to no wrongdoing and says it was cheaper to just settle the case.

Millard County Deputy Clete Carter's dashcam video from last May shows Pikyavit, handcuffed, hit his head. After that, he filed a lawsuit against Millard County claiming police brutality.

Pikyavit's attorney, Bob Sykes, said, "This was a fair settlement; $25,000 for this kind of an injury, this kind of violation of his rights, is fair."

Even though the county paid, it admitted to no wrongdoing. Frank Mylar, attorney for Millard County, said, "In the settlement, it specifically says we do not admit to wrongdoing, and it actually says that in fact we believe Clete Carter acted appropriately in all circumstances."

The county claims Pikyavit, who admits he was drunk at the time, was lunging at Deputy Carter, and the deputy was just defending himself. The county also says if the tape is slowed down, it's clear to see Deputy Carter trying to catch Pikyavit's head before it hit the ground.

Mylar believes he could have successfully defended the lawsuit but figured settling was cheaper for the county than dragging it through court. "There's no question it was for less than for what it would have cost to defend the suit," he said.

Whether the deputy was right depends on who you talk to.

Sykes said, "To admit no wrong when you're wrong, is wrong. I think that officer needs some serious training."

But Mylar said, "I've been doing this for over 20 years and I did not see any misconduct by the patrol officer."

Millard County Sheriff Robert Dekker said today that he was more than willing to go to court to stand up for Deputy Carter. Sheriff Dekker also said there's a lot more to this story that the public doesn't know. We offered him the opportunity to tell it, but he said he would have to talk to his attorneys first.

Either way, the case is now closed. For background information to what happened that led to this settlement, see the Related Stories link on this page.

E-mail: acabrero@ksl.com

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Alex Cabrero


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