Northeast Colorado prosecutor indicted on drug charges, misconduct

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DENVER  |  An elected prosecutor for Colorado’s northeastern rural plains surrendered to authorities Friday, one day after being indicted on drug charges following an investigation by the state’s attorney general.

Brittny Lewton, 40, was charged with three drug felonies, including conspiracy and possession, as well as official misconduct, a misdemeanor, according to online court records. She turned herself into authorities in Logan County, one of seven counties in the 13th Judicial District where she serves as the district attorney.

Online court records did not specify the type of drug or drugs in the indictment, which has not been made public. Lewton’s attorney, Stan Garnett, said the charges appear to be based on one incident in July 2019 involving an alleged exchange of prescription medication. Garnett, a former district attorney in Boulder County, said he could not elaborate.

Garnett, who served as a mentor to Lewton when she was first elected, said she is well respected by the courts, law enforcement, her employees and residents and he will vigorously defend her.

“I believe a jury would find her not guilty if we took the case to trial,” he said.

Democratic Gov. Jared Polis in August issued an executive order appointing Attorney General Phil Weiser to investigate unspecified potential criminal activity by Lewton. A spokesman for Weiser, Lawrence Pacheco, said he could not comment on the case.

According to the biography posted on her office’s website, Lewton started working as an intern for the 13th Judicial District before being hired in 2005.

Lewton, a Republican, was first elected district district attorney in 2012. She was re-elected by a wide margin in 2016 in the district that includes Kit Carson, Logan, Morgan, Phillips, Sedgwick, Washington and Yuma counties.

Garnett said Lewton would remain in her job as the case proceeds. He expected a judge from outside Lewton’s district to oversee the case.

The Colorado District Attorneys’ Council said it had confidence in the justice system and Weiser’s office to handle the matter with professionalism and integrity and noted that Lewton, like all other defendants, is presumed innocent until proven guilty.