2 people accuse deputy of sex crimes
At least two people have accused a Multnomah County corrections deputy of rape or sexual assault. He also is suspected of official misconduct for allegedly having consensual sex during work hours at the downtown Multnomah County Courthouse.
Deputy Dwight David Richey has not been charged with a crime and has remained on paid administrative leave since July 11.
The case has dragged on behind closed doors for more than six months — spurring one woman to go public with her story. She told KATU News she was dog-watching for a friend when Richey forced himself on her repeatedly while she cried and protested.
"The main victim woke up. She saw (NBC anchor) Matt Lauer had been fired on the accusation of one woman," said Washington County Sheriff's Detective Robert Rookhuyzen, "and she felt really pissed, (thinking), 'Why is this guy still on paid leave? I'm tired of waiting.'"
The detective said a separate person has made an allegation of sexual assault.
Richey did not respond to a voicemail requesting comment. A relative of his told the Portland Tribune that the rape allegation is a "terrible lie," adding "we are a law-abiding family."
The 48-year-old Portland resident has been divorced three times, according to Multnomah and Washington County family court records, and has no criminal record besides traffic violations.
The Washington County Sheriff's Office said it started an investigation on May 29 and recently handed it off to the Oregon Department of Justice. Both the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office and the Multnomah County District Attorney stepped aside to prevent a potential conflict of interest.
"The two (DOJ) attorneys are weighing whether there is enough information to move forward with a grand jury, or their other option is to take no action," explained Detective Rookhuyzen.
"It has been going on a long time. It's not completely unusual, it's just that when more stuff is coming in we have to go investigate it," he continued. "We kept learning of additional information, including even this week."
The Multnomah County Sheriff's Office first alluded to the investigation in a news release from August, though the agency declined at that time to identify who was involved, what allegations had been made or when the alleged incident occurred.
"We don't talk about our own cases prematurely, so we sure don't want to talk about other cases (handled by different agencies)," said Sgt. Brandon White with MCSO.
KATU News did not identify the woman accusing Richey of rape, instead referring to her with the pseudonym Emily. She said she knew Richey's family through her ex-boyfriend.
"I was leaving and he asked if I would spend the night with him and I yelled at him and I said, 'No. Are you crazy? Like, what the hell?!" the station quoted her as saying. "And then I asked him if he was gonna take care of the dog. ... And then I left."
Richey is a member of Multnomah County's court services department, which includes employees who work at the Courthouse, downtown jail in Portland and juvenile detention center.
For an updated story with new information, click here.