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Former Washington County deputy convicted of harassment

A Washington County sheriff's deputy convicted of sexually harassing a Wilsonville woman has retired from the sheriff's office, as part of a plea agreement.

David Bergquist, a deputy with the department for more than 20 years, retired from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office last week and agreed to plead guilty to one count of first-degree harassment.

Sgt. Bob Ray, a spokesman with the Washington County Sheriff's Office, did not elaborate on the nature of the harassment but The Oregonian newspaper reported that Bergquist allegedly inappropriately touched a female co-worker's breast while off duty in January 2015.

Bergquist's conviction follows an extensive investigation into allegations made last April, Ray said.

The former deputy was investigated after an anonymous email was sent to the Sheriff's Office alleging sexual misconduct by several law enforcement officers in the department.

Bergquist was not named in the letter, although two other members of the Sheriff's Office were.

Bergquist was placed on paid administrative leave after Washington County Sheriff Pat Garrett asked the Portland Police Bureau to investigate the allegations. Portland investigators uncovered information indicating Bergquist had also engaged in inappropriate conduct while off duty.

The Multnomah County District Attorney's Office contacted Clackamas County prosecutors because at least some of Bergquist’s alleged misbehavior reportedly occurred in Wilsonville.

The Clackamas County district attorney's office reached a plea agreement with Bergquist on Tuesday, March 22. He agreed to plead guilty to one count of first-degree harassment and to relinquish his police certifications and resign.

Bergquist already had retired from the sheriff's office on March 18.

Bergquist was booked and released from the Clackamas County Jail on Tuesday. He is also required to complete 18 months of probation and 24 hours of community service.

"I am committed to ensuring this type of behavior, whether on or off duty, is not part of our future,” said Garrett in a written statement. “While some changes have been implemented, additional improvements may be appropriate as more information is received. I extend my gratitude to the Portland Police Bureau and the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office for their important work on this case.”

Two other deputies at the sheriff's office implicated in the letter, Sgt. Dan Cardinal and Cpl. John Christensen, have also resigned or been fired.

Christensen was fired after he allegedly coerced an off-duty female deputy into a sexual relationship while he was in uniform. He has pleaded not guilty. His trial is set for September.

Cardinal pleaded no contest after he allegedly coerced deputies to have sex with him while on duty. He was also charged with harassing female deputies. He resigned last year.