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Sheriff investigates deputy who is also an election candidate


A Columbia County Sheriff’s deputy, who is also running as a candidate in this year’s Sheriff race, is on paid administrative leave pending investigations into an April 1 car accident.

There are two components to the investigation into allegations against Deputy Dave Fuller, said current Sheriff Jeff Dickerson: a personnel side that the sheriff’s office staff is handling and a criminal investigation that is being conducted by the Oregon State Police.

Allegations against a deputy are a serious matter, Dickerson said, and the department needs to make sure “we do everything aboveboard.”

Neither Dickerson nor the Oregon State Police would say exactly what those allegations are at this point, but Dickerson said both investigations revolve around a car accident that occurred early in the morning on April 1.

OSP Lt. Gregg Hastings said Fuller was cited in May for failing to report that accident which involved over $1,500 in damage to Fuller’s vehicle.

Fuller has been on paid leave since May 18. He did not respond to numerous calls for comment by deadline.

The fact that Fuller and Dickerson are running against each other in the upcoming election makes the investigation “difficult” based on how people from outside his office might perceive the fact that the sheriff is leading an investigation into his opponent, Dickerson said.

But, he added, it is his job as the current sheriff to uphold high standards in the office and investigate any complaints or allegations.

“From our perspective, we have a job to do,” he said.