Recall against Sheriff Hatcher can officially proceed
Washington Supreme Court ruled in unanimous decision
OLYMPIA, Wash. — The recall of Benton County Sheriff Jerry Hatcher will officially proceed due to a recent Washington Supreme Court ruling.
In an order filed on Nov. 6, the state Supreme Court unanimously agreed with the original court ruling on the matter “and finds all of the charges to be legally and factually sufficient.”
The eight charges in the recall are as follows:
- Illegally appropriated for his own use 14 cases of ammunition belonging to Benton County.
- Illegally tampered with physical evidence by directing the distribution of ammunition that was potential evidence of his own alleged unlawful acts.
- Interfered in an investigation into his conduct by acting to prevent witnesses from being interviewed.
- Violated county anti-discrimination policy by hindering an investigation into his conduct and retaliating against the complainant and witnesses to the investigation.
- Illegally intimidated public servants and witnesses in investigations into his conduct by raising false allegations of impropriety and threatening witnesses’ jobs.
- Illegally made false or misleading statements to law enforcement and the court regarding the number of firearms he needed to surrender pursuant to a court order.
- Illegally made false or misleading statements to public servants claiming that he had initiated a criminal investigation into his own conduct when he had not.
- Falsified a public record by placing a false date on an investigation request.
Benton County residents have six months to gather roughly 14,000 signatures to qualify for a special election to remove the sheriff. A group of citizens have already created a site detailing the recall efforts.