Criminal sexual allegations lead to resignation at Kitsap 911

Kitsap 911 announced in a Jan. 30 news release the resignation oflongtime executive director Richard Kirton in the midst of a criminal investigation.

The announcement was made shortly after the agency’s board of directors went into executive session to “review the performance of a public employee.” The board appointed deputy director Maria K. Jameson-Owens as acting executive director.

Early reports indicate Kirton was taken into custody at a King County hotel just before midnight Jan. 26 in a sting operation in which he allegedly sent sexually charged messages to someone he believed was 16 years old but was instead an undercover police detective. He was released over the weekend on $5,000 bail.

King County court records say Kirton is suspected of “communicating with a minor for immoral purposes.” He had not been officially charged in court as of Jan. 30.