Layton police officer arrested for stalking his ex-girlfriend for months
Jul 14, 2023, 10:22 PM | Updated: Jul 15, 2023, 2:26 pm
LAYTON, Utah — A Layton police officer has been arrested after stalking his ex-girlfriend for seven months, court documents state.
The man was identified by a probable cause statement as 33-year-old Austin Christofferson.
On Wednesday, police responded to a call from a woman reporting that her ex-boyfriend was stalking her. According to the woman, she spotted Christofferson on her way home, sitting in his car near her apartment.
When she noticed the vehicle, the woman said she raised her arms and mouthed, “Why are you here?” At which point Christofferson left.
The woman told police that Christofferson had been stalking her “on a consistent basis” since December 2022 and that “he was a law enforcement officer.”
According to court documents, the woman said the stalking occurred through text messaging, phone calls, and unannounced and uninvited visits at her apartment on multiple occasions.
Court documents state, “The victim told Christofferson to stop contacting her and to leave her alone.”
The woman explained to police in an interview that she had ended a relationship with Christofferson on June 29. From June 29 to July 12, Christofferson sent the woman approximately 177 text messages and called 64 times.
Christofferson also texted the woman a photo with blood in it, which she said “made her fearful for her safety” because Christofferson had previously threatened to kill himself if they broke up.
On July 7, the woman found notes and flowers Christofferson left at her apartment. On July 9, Christofferson showed up at her apartment and the woman observed him later that same day driving by her sister’s residence.
“During the interview the victim stated that she did not previously report this behavior as she felt mentally and emotionally abused due to what Christofferson would text her or tell her in person,” the probable cause statement read. “The victim also stated that Christofferson has on multiple occasions showed up to her residence in his police vehicle and uniform, which further made her fearful for her safety and fearful to report due to his influence with police. ”
On one occasion when Christofferson showed up at the victim’s residence at night, he banged on her front door and looked through her windows. The woman reported she feared for her safety and had to hide on her floor to prevent Christofferson from seeing her.
Christofferson was charged with one count of stalking, a third-degree felony.
A lethality assessment protocol was completed and showed the victim to be in high danger.
On Friday, the Layton City Police Department confirmed to KSL TV that Christofferson is a Layton police officer.
If you or someone you know is going through abuse, help is available.
- The Utah Domestic Violence Coalition operates a confidential statewide, 24-hour domestic abuse hotline at 1-800-897-LINK (5465).
- Resources are also available online at the Utah Domestic Violence Coalition website.
- YWCA Women in Jeopardy program: 801-537-8600
- Utah’s statewide child abuse and neglect hotline: 1-855-323-DCFS (3237)
- National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233
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Child abuse resources:
- Utah Domestic Violence Coalition operates a confidential statewide, 24-hour domestic abuse hotline at 1-800-897-LINK (5465). Resources are also available online: udvc.org. The statewide child abuse and neglect hotline is 1-855-323-DCFS (3237).
Help with Children
Those who feel stressed out with a child, who need a break or who feel like they need counseling or training can reach out to one of the following agencies:
- The Family Support Center has 15 locations throughout the state and offers a free crisis nursery for parents who have to keep appointments or who are stressed out. They also offer counseling and family mentoring. Call 801-955-9110 or visit familysupportcenter.org/contact.php for more information.
- Prevent Child Abuse Utah provides home visiting in Weber, Davis, and Box Elder counties. Parent Educators provide support, education, and activities for families with young children. Their statewide education team offers diverse trainings on protective factors, digital safety, bullying, and child sex trafficking. They are available for in-person or virtual trainings and offer free online courses for the community at pcautah.org.
- The Office of Home Visiting works with local agencies to provide home visits to pregnant women and young families who would like to know more about being parents. Home visitors are trained and can provide information about breastfeeding, developmental milestones, toilet training, nutrition, mental health, home safety, child development, and much more. Find out more at homevisiting.utah.gov.
- The Safe Haven law allows birth parents in Utah to safely and anonymously give up custody of their newborn child at any hospital in the state, with no legal consequences and no questions asked. The child’s mother can drop off the child, or the mother can ask someone else to do it for her. The newborns should be dropped off at hospitals that are open 24 hours a day. Newborns given up in this manner will be cared for by the hospital staff, and the Utah Division of Child and Family Services will find a home for the child. For more information, visit utahsafehaven.org or call the 24-hour hotline at 866-458-0058.