Ed Troyer, the sheriff of Pierce County successful Washington State, was charged with making a mendacious assertion aft saying the antheral had threatened to termination him, prosecutors said.
Oct. 20, 2021Updated 4:54 p.m. ET
A sitting sheriff successful Washington State has been charged with making a mendacious assertion that a Black antheral had driven up to his location and threatened to termination him, prosecutors said.
Sheriff Ed Troyer of Pierce County called 911 successful January 2021 to study that helium had utilized his S.U.V. to country a antheral who was driving “in and retired of driveways” successful his vicinity successful Tacoma, Wash.
“He knows who I americium and helium threatened to termination me,” Sheriff Troyer, 59, who is white, told the 911 telephone taker, according to a tribunal papers filed by the authorities lawyer general’s bureau connected Tuesday.
Within minutes, 40 officers descended connected the neighborhood, their sirens blaring. When they arrived, they approached the driver, Sedrick Altheimer, who kept his hands connected the wheel. He told the officers to look astatine the spot of his car, wherever copies of The Tacoma News Tribune were piled.
“I americium working!” Mr. Altheimer, 25, yelled. “I’m a Black antheral successful a achromatic neighborhood, and I americium working!”
Prosecutors said that erstwhile officers asked Sheriff Troyer what had happened, helium acknowledged that “Altheimer ne'er threatened him.”
No 1 was arrested that night, and the constabulary fto some men go.
But successful March, The Seattle Times published a story that quoted Mr. Altheimer and linked to a constabulary study astir the incident, infuriating civilian rights activists, who filed a national suit against Sheriff Troyer. On April 23, Gov. Jay Inslee announced that helium had asked Attorney General Robert Ferguson to analyse the case due to the fact that nary enactment had been taken “to initiate a transgression probe astatine the section level.”
“So present the authorities is stepping in,” the politician said then.
On Tuesday, Mr. Ferguson said that Sheriff Troyer, who was elected successful November, had been charged with 1 number of making a mendacious oregon misleading connection to a nationalist servant, a misdemeanor complaint that carried a maximum condemnation of 364 days successful jail.
In a statement, Sheriff Troyer, who has worked for the section since 1985, called the complaint “a blatant and politically motivated anti-cop deed job.”
“The nighttime of the incidental I was doing what I person done for decades — analyse the anticipation of transgression enactment aft neighbors and I had repeatedly go victims of spot crime,” helium said.
Sheriff Troyer accused Mr. Ferguson of trying to “defund the police” and asked the nationalist to enactment him successful “standing up to bullies successful power.”
“I’m built for this situation and volition combat it to the end,” the sheriff said.
He volition beryllium arraigned connected Nov. 1 and volition participate a not blameworthy plea, said John Sheeran, his lawyer.
“He didn’t marque a mendacious statement,” Mr. Sheeran said. “Sheriff Troyer said that nighttime that his beingness was threatened and he’s maintained that is the lawsuit ever since.”
Mr. Altheimer did not instantly respond to messages seeking an interview. He has filed a $5 cardinal ineligible assertion against the county, according to The Seattle Times.
Mr. Altheimer said helium began his transportation way astatine midnight connected Jan. 27, according to the tribunal document. He had been moving for astir 2 hours, delivering newspapers from a 1995 Geo Prizm, erstwhile helium saw Sheriff Troyer’s S.U.V. pursuing him. The S.U.V. stopped 3 times arsenic helium stopped to driblet disconnected newspapers.
After the 3rd stop, Mr. Altheimer, who had conscionable finished delivering a newspaper, approached Sheriff Troyer’s S.U.V.
According to prosecutors, Mr. Altheimer asked Sheriff Troyer if helium was a constabulary officer.
“Troyer did not reply the question. Nor did helium place himself arsenic the sheriff oregon a instrumentality enforcement officer,” according to the tribunal document, a connection of probable cause.
Mr. Altheimer said that “Sheriff Troyer seemed relaxed and was holding a cellphone successful his hand.”
Sheriff Troyer asked Mr. Altheimer what helium was doing successful the vicinity and if helium knew wherever helium was, according to prosecutors. He past accused him of stealing.
“You’re a structure pirate,” Sheriff Troyer said, according to the statement.
Mr. Altheimer walked distant from him, and Sheriff Troyer, moving his conveyance again, called out, “Hey, don’t locomotion distant … I person 4 cops coming,” the connection said.
Mr. Altheimer responded, “Good,” according to the statement. He tried to thrust away, but Sheriff Troyer continued to travel him.
When the constabulary arrived, they recovered the 2 cars astir 50 feet apart, facing each different successful a cul-de-sac.
Mr. Altheimer appeared aggravated and upset arsenic helium explained to the constabulary his mentation of events, according to constabulary assemblage camera footage that was obtained by The Tacoma News Tribune.
“What are we present for?” helium yelled, his arms folded successful beforehand of him.
“Search my car. There’s newspapers,” helium said, cursing and pleading to spell backmost to work.
Mr. Altheimer told the officers that helium knew who Sheriff Troyer was due to the fact that helium recognized him from tv and due to the fact that helium was successful the vicinity six mornings a week, delivering newspapers.
He told the officers helium had approached Sheriff Troyer due to the fact that helium wanted to cognize wherefore helium was pursuing him.
“Nobody made nary threats,” said Mr. Altheimer, who told the officers helium had 5 children.
“So what this looks similar is simply a large lawsuit of misunderstanding, OK?” the serviceman told Mr. Altheimer. “I judge you, OK?”
When the constabulary spoke with Sheriff Troyer, helium said that “it was wide Altheimer ‘wanted to fight’” erstwhile helium had approached.
When the officers told him Mr. Altheimer was conscionable delivering newspapers, Sheriff Troyer replied that they should fto him go, according to the tribunal document.
The Pierce County Council said successful April that it had hired a erstwhile United States lawyer to behaviour a separate, autarkic probe into the lawsuit to determine, successful part, whether Sheriff Troyer had “misused his authority” oregon violated immoderate transgression instrumentality oregon section argumentation oregon regulation. The results of that probe were expected to beryllium released aft the authorities investigation.
On Tuesday, the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department said successful a connection that Sheriff Troyer “remains the elected sheriff successful afloat lawful authorization and is presumed guiltless until proven guilty.”