Todd Palin says Mike Wooten Intervened When a Couple Got Into an Argument in a Bar

Another tidbit from the Hackett’s Legal Investigations attachments in the back of Todd Palin’s statement to Stephen Branchwater. This is dated 6/27/2005 and concerns a confrontation in the Mugshot Saloon in Wasilla  between 2:00 and 3:00 am in the morning. Chris Brightbill spoke to investigator Leonard Hackett. Brightbill was the evening bar manager and bartender at the Mugshot Saloon from 6:00 pm to 6:00 am. (Quick note: Bars in Alaska are open all night?)

Brad Jackman and his girlfriend were in the bar arguing. Brightbill said that trooper Mike Wooten decided to get in the middle of the argument and raised his voice at Jackson. The two then stood up, gesticulated, and looked like they were going to fight. Brightbill got Wooten out of the bar and asked him to not get into it with Jackman; that Brightbill would take care of the situation. Brightbill said if he had not intervened and gotten Wooten outside of the bar that there could have been a fight. Apparently, that was enough to diffuse the situation between Wooten and Brightbill.

So Wooten was in a bar with a friend and tried to intervene when Jackman and his girlfriend got into an argument. This event could cut both ways. Hackett’s description is more lurid than Brightbill’s including describing both participants as being drunk. Brightbill does not state that the participants are drunk but indicates that Wooten had come into the bar with a friend about an hour before the confrontation. Brightbill was definitely unhappy that Wooten got involved in an argument in his bar and was not pleased that he had to ask a state trooper to diffuse a potential fight between two customers in his bar, particularly when one of them was a state trooper. But this incident could also be held up as an example of Wooten trying to protect a women in a fight with her boyfriend. Hackett himself wrote that Brightbill thought Wooten wanted to “be the hero in this matter of Brad and his girlfriend fighting and he wanted a confrontation.” So it sounded like it was more than simple bickering between a couple that morning in the bar.

I wonder why Todd Palin’s attorney allowed him to include this attachment in his statement to Branchflower. Parts of the statement certainly reflect poorly on Wooten and could be construed to show a pattern of aggressive or threatening behavior. And Todd Palin repeated states that Wooten was a threat to his family. But the part about Wooten intervening between a nasty fight between a couple doesn’t show Wooten in a poor light.

Todd Palin’s Statement in response to the subpoena. (52 pages in pdf format — the part about the bar argument is at the end right before the attachment about the $5 dump fine)


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