A former Mandan police officer charged with felony sex crimes for allegedly videotaping a minor is expected to plead guilty to amended charges, court records show.
The trial of Scott Warzecha, 45, scheduled to start Thursday has been canceled, according to court documents. A change-of-plea hearing is scheduled for April 16.
Warzecha was charged in November with felony use of a minor in a sexual performance, which carries a potential sentence of 20 years in prison. He also is charged with two counts of felony surreptitious intrusion.
The Morton County Sheriff’s Office in mid-November responded to a call that Warzecha was threatening to harm himself. His actions followed the discovery of his alleged use of a cellphone to record a person under the age of 18, authorities said. The incident was not work-related. A second video recording incident was reported to police during the investigation, police said.
Warzecha, a 13-year police veteran, was placed on administrative leave at the onset of the investigation and fired a few days later. He was the handler of the Mandan department’s first K-9, Kupper. The dog joined the department in August 2019.
Defense attorney Justin Vinje on Wednesday filed a request to cancel Warzecha’s trial, court records show. The prosecution on April 1 filed a proposal to amend the charges against Warzecha.
Reach Travis Svihovec at 701-250-8260 or Travis.Svihovec@bismarcktribune.com