From the pages of
Sublette Examiner
Volume 2, Number 37 - December 12, 2002
brought to you online by Pinedale Online

Deputy charged with sexual assault

Sublette County Sheriff Hank Ruland said in a Monday morning interview, "I terminated an employee of the sheriff's office this past Tuesday."

Ruland directed the Examiner to Sublette County Attorney Dale Aronson for questions regarding what criminal charges have been filed against the employee.

Contacted at his home on Tuesday, Aronson said he is forbidden by law from releasing the name of the defendant or from releasing information likely to identify the victim. But the defendant is a deputy and the charge is second-degree sexual assault, meaning it involved "the use of authority," Aronson said. Sexual assault in the second degree is a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 20 years.

Ruland said the investigation leading to the charge took place over several months. Ruland noted the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation assisted his department.

Ruland said the employee was "arrested, booked, posted bond and released."

Ruland said after he terminated the employee, he met with all his department personnel "to allay any fears."

Ruland said the gag order under which he has been operating is prescribed in Wyoming Statute 6-2-310 which orders that names cannot be released.

That statute reads: "Prior to the filing of an information or indictment, neither the names of the alleged actor or victim of a sexual assault nor any other information reasonably likely to disclose the identity of the victim shall be released or negligently allowed to be released to the public by any public employee except as authorized by the judge or justice with jurisdiction over the criminal charges. The actor's name may be released to the public to aid or facilitate an arrest."

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