An Alaska woman who owns a company that processes workers’ compensation claims in the state has told an independent investigator that she was urged by the office of Gov. Sarah Palin to deny a benefits claim for Palin’s ex brother-in-law, a state trooper who was involved in an ugly divorce and child custody dispute with Palin’s sister, despite evidence that the claim appeared to be legitimate, according to state officials who were briefed about the conversation.
Murlene Wilkes, the proprietor of Harbor Adjustment Service in Anchorage, had originally denied that she was pressured by Gov. Palin’s office to deny state trooper Mike Wooten’s claim for workers compensation benefits.
But Wilkes changed her story two weeks ago when she was subpoenaed by Steven Branchflower, the former federal prosecutor who was appointed in July to probe allegations Gov. Palin, Republican presidential candidate John McCain’s running mate, abused her office by abruptly ousting Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan, state officials knowledgeable about her conversation with Branchflower said.
Branchflower said his report should be complete by October 10. Should be interesting to say the least.