- Associated Press - Thursday, April 13, 2017

WATFORD CITY, N.D. (AP) - A former McKenzie County sheriff’s deputy accused of lying to state investigators while still on the job is preparing to change his not guilty plea.

Former Lt. Michael Schmitz was to stand trial in May on two misdemeanor counts for allegedly lying to investigators in 2015 about his prescription pill use and his role in a divorce and domestic violence case.

Court documents show the criminal case has been settled and the trial canceled, and that Schmitz has given notice that he will file a written plea.

The charges against him carry a maximum total sentence of two years in prison.

Schmitz was fired by the sheriff in late December, right before he was to appear before the County Commission for a hearing over alleged bullying and retaliatory behavior.

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