BEND, Ore. - (Update: Details of restraining order, wife's claims of threat)
The estranged wife of an Oregon State Police spokesman has obtained a restraining order against him, saying he threatened her last fall, was "very volatile" and possessed a gun.
The petition was filed on the same day Capt. Bill Fugate was placed on paid administrative leave because of a criminal investigation.
The Fugates, who live in Redmond, have been going through a divorce. The restraining order petition says Georgina Monrean-Fugate contacted the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office on Tuesday to report that her husband had threatened her in November while possessing a gun.
On Wednesday, Monrean-Fugate made the report and was told Fugate would be relieved of his badge and gun and placed on leave pending the investigation.
"He has been very volatile but careful to keep domestic abuse hidden to keep his career," the signed petition stated. "Now that that is jeopardized, there is nothing holding him back."
The restraining order prohibits Fugate from possessing firearms or going within 500 feet of his wife.
The order was approved on Wednesday, the same day Fugate was placed on paid administrative leave.
According to the restraining order petition filed by Monrean-Fugate, an altercation happened on Nov. 9 and into the morning of Nov. 10 of last year.
She wrote, "He came into the house (very late at night), took my phone and held me there," the petition reads. "He had a gun and I feared that he would shoot me."
Monrean-Fugate on Tuesday made a report to the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office about the November incident, according to the petition.
Fugate did not return a call seeking comment.
Deschutes County Sheriff Shane Nelson declined to discuss the criminal investigation, but said it began after a complaint was received Tuesday, and it has nothing to do with Fugate's conduct on the job.
The Deschutes County Sheriff's Office said Thursday it had begun a criminal investigation into Fugate, who has been placed on paid leave. No details of the allegations were released.
Sheriff's Sgt. William Bailey said the investigation was initiated after receiving an anonymous report shortly before 8 p.m. Tuesday.
"We are in the early stages of this investigation and will not be releasing any specific information at this time about the nature of the investigation," Bailey said in a news release, although he added: "The investigation is not related to his employment or on-duty conduct."
Fugate has been with the OSP for about 11 years, most recently as PIO. He was placed on paid administrative leave on Wednesday, when OSP was notified of the sheriff's office criminal investigation.
If criminal charges are filed, Bailey said, OSP's practice has been to modify the administrative leave to an unpaid administrative leave status.
Nelson told NewsChannel 21 he could not say how long the investigation would take.
"We want to be thorough in this investigation, while respecting individual rights and also keeping that understanding that this affects a family, this affects human beings, as well as the citizens we serve," he said. "So we want to have that delicate balance between transparency and conducting a thorough investigation."
"It's difficult to dictate what the timeline is during a criminal investigation, because you never know where the evidence or facts might take you," the sheriff said. "We have some other individuals we want to interview regarding this case, so I'm not able to give a timeline, and I'm not able to give an estimate of when we will release more information."
In the news release, Nelson said: "This investigation involves a high-level commander in a professional law enforcement agency. We are in the beginning stages of this investigation and want to balance transparency with our duty to protect the integrity of the investigation.
"We take these investigations seriously and will always do the right thing. In all criminal investigations, we respect our citizen's rights as we investigate to gather the facts," the sheriff said.
OSP Superintendent Travis Hampton said, "I placed Captain Fugate on administrative leave once I learned of the criminal investigation initiated by the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office.
"The Oregon State Police is grateful for the immediate and professional response by the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office, to allegations involving our employee. We are appreciative for the timely notification to our agency, so duty status determinations could be immediately made. OSP has the utmost confidence in Sheriff Nelson and his investigators to conduct a comprehensive and transparent investigation," Hampton said.