No charges against Granite Falls former police chief

GRANITE FALLS — Snohomish County prosecutors said on Thursday they won’t file criminal charges against former Granite Falls police chief Tony Domish in connection with missing evidence.

Prosecutors have reviewed a Marysville police investigation into allegations that Domish mishandled about $4,000 that was found or seized during his tenure there.

Granite Falls officials requested an outside investigation after the new police chief, Dennis Taylor, discovered trouble in how evidence was handled. The missing evidence included money that was found and turned in to police, as well as money that was somehow associated with suspected drug trafficking.

Prosecutors say there isn’t enough evidence to prove that Domish committed a crime. Domish didn’t follow the statutory requirements that allow police to use seized money as part of their criminal investigations, such as controlled drug buys, according to prosecutors.

The evidence indicates that Domish used the money for police business, not for his own personal benefit, Snohomish County chief criminal deputy prosecutor Joan Cavagnaro said.

“It seems they saw the money sitting there in the property room and thought, ‘Let’s put it to use,’” Cavagnaro said. “There’s not enough evidence to show that he was pocketing the money.”

The documents provided by Marysville detectives show that about $3,000 was used by police in investigative drug buys. Detectives couldn’t account for about $1,000. There isn’t enough evidence to prove that Domish or a former police sergeant kept the money.

Cavagnaro also said there also isn’t enough evidence to prove that Domish falsified documents.

Domish was police chief from 2006 until 2010. He resigned after months of friction with Mayor Haroon Saleem. As part of his resignation, Granite Falls officials agreed to drop an internal investigation into Domish, who agreed not to sue the city.

Domish received a severance package of more than $78,000.

He went on to take a job as chief at the Bingen-White Salmon Police Department in Klickitat County, near the Oregon border.

City officials there recently terminated his contract and agreed to pay him $35,000 in severance. Domish had been on the job less than a year.

Diana Hefley: 425-339-3463; hefley@heraldnet.com.

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