Multnomah County chair Deborah Kafoury just issued the following statement on Sheriff Dan Staton's retirement:
These issues have been a recurring distraction for the men and women of the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office who work diligently everyday to protect the health safety and welfare of our community.
They have very difficult jobs and I am keenly aware that they need to be able to focus on those jobs. My staff and I will continue to work with Sheriff’s Office employees to ensure they can be effective and assure a smooth transition.
This is not the time to rehash any issues about the sheriff. I am looking forward, not back. But I want to reassure people who live here and visit, that Multnomah County is committed to their safety and protection.
Controversial Multnomah County Sheriff Dan Staton announced in an email this morning that he will retire in August, and that former Portland police chief Mike Reese will take over for him on an interim basis.
Staton has been plagued by a number of recent scandals during his tenure and has been accused of generally being an asshole to work for. He was a subject to a recent no confidence vote by the Multnomah County Deputy Sheriff's Association, and was repeatedly asked to step down by AFSCME, the county's largest employee union.
Here's the email Staton sent out less than an hour ago to county chair Deborah Kafoury, county commissioners Jules Bailey, Loretta Smith, Judy Shiprack, Diane McKeel, district attorney Rod Underhill, and county attorney Jenny Madkour.
I wanted to inform you that I have sent out the following email to the members of my Agency this morning:
I have been thinking about all of the employees here at the Sheriff's Office and everything that has transpired over the past months. You truly are the finest... I can no longer subject any of you to the challenges that I am facing. To that end I will be retiring from my position as Sheriff on August 16th of this year. I have informed the Chair and other Commissioners of my decision, to include District Attorney Underhill and the Oregon State Sheriff's Association.
With that, I will be hiring Mike Reese on June 20th as the new Undersheriff. We will begin the process of acclimating him to the Sheriff's Office operations. This will include transitioning the budget and those responsibilities associated to the position and rank he will hold as the Sheriff's interim designee. This will include introductions to our Board of County Commissioners and other elected officials and department heads of the county.
I will be sending out a follow up email to fill you in on additional plans as we get closer to my retirement date. I want to thank you for your expressed concern, support and continued service to the citizens of our county.
Multnomah County Sheriff
Staton's replacement, Mike Reese, retired from the Portland Police Bureau in January 2015, after serving as four years as the city's police chief—a relatively long tenure in a position that's seen a good deal of turnover (and looks like it might again, soon). Since leaving the bureau, he's led the Citizen's Crime Commission, a lobbying entity with a focus on criminal justice.
But Reese's departure from City Hall came after well publicized designs on a possible run for mayor. His ascension to the top of the sheriff's office puts him in prime position to launch a bid for another elected office.