The morality of Clackamas County government is at an all-time low. Late last year, Clackamas County Sheriff's Office Sgt. Micah Hibpshman was accused of strangling his wife, putting a gun to her head, and threatening to kill her if she left him. There was evidence and an arrest was quickly made. Then things took a dark turn.
Clackamas County District Attorney John Wentworth handed the case off to Marion County DA Paige Clarkson, who is married to a cop. It's probably not the best idea for a thin-blue-line proponent to be deciding police cases for Clackamas County.
Clarkson certainly did her job for law enforcement, as she dismissed the charges against Sgt. Hibpshman. She insists that his wife wouldn't cooperate. Hmm, I wonder why? She was threatened with death if she left him. Wouldn't one suspect she might be threatened with death if she cooperated with the Marion County DA? The Marion County DA didn't care. She did a favor for John Wentworth. I'm sure she'll be expecting one in return.
I am most disappointed with the Clackamas County Board of Commissioners, who do not care about the health and safety of Mrs. Hibpshman. I've been asking them for months to do something, to say something. Nothing. No backbone, no conscience. I'd love to see one public statement, from any of them! They are as silent as crickets.
The Board of County Commissioners oversees the police budget. They have all the power; it's called the power of the purse. They could be cracking down on domestic violence, but they won't. Tootie Smith supports the sheriff, the DA supports Sonya Fischer, and the rest just grease one another's palms.
Our elected officials put themselves first. How about putting the women of Clackamas County first? No one is safe from domestic violence when you have this crew representing Clackamas County. It's an utter travesty.
Brian Fitzgerald is a Happy Valley resident.
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