June 10, 2016

Message from Deschutes County Sheriff

From Deschutes Co. Sheriff's Office,


Spokesman files

MESSAGE FROM SHERIFF L. SHANE NELSON

In my commitment to continue to be as transparent as possible, I am releasing the following information. Please understand that I cannot release specific details about these investigations as I do not want to jeopardize their outcome. At this time, these are just allegations and will be thoroughly investigated.

1) On Friday, May 20, 2016, I received information from an employee regarding alleged rumors circulating about restrictions on political campaigning by public employees. I contacted the Oregon Department of Justice as soon as possible and they accepted the request for an internal investigation relating to 2013 ORS 162.415 (Official misconduct in the first degree) and 2013 ORS 260.665 (Undue influence to affect registration, voting, candidacy, signing petition).

I take these allegations very seriously and respect the absolute right of all citizens to run for public office.

The Department of Justice is working with the Secretary of State on how to proceed with this investigation.


2) On June 3, 2016, our office was notified by ATF that they wanted to conduct an inquiry into an employee regarding potential violations of whether he needed to obtain a federal firearms license to build a firearm for a co-worker while off duty. We were informed that they received an anonymous complaint, as well as, a named complaint approximately 2 months ago. On June 8, 2016, ATF came to our office and completed the inquiry on Lt. Robert Trono and advised our office that this was "not a prosecutable violation". ATF will not be opening a case on this and will not be looking into this incident any further. Our office will review this through an administrative investigation. Lt. Trono is not on administrative leave given ATF's conclusion.


3) Two employee-generated complaints have been filed against me (Sheriff L. Shane Nelson) within the last two weeks. The complaints were made by employees who were prior supervisors. These investigations are being handled by outside agencies and our office will fully cooperate with the investigators.

I stand behind my actions as your Sheriff over the last 11 months. I have made a lot of change within our organization and as my actions have shown, if and when there is an issue, I will take care of business. I will do the right thing, at the right time, for the right reasons.

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