The city of West Linn fired a police officer Tuesday due to his involvement in a racist investigation and wrongful arrest of a Black man in Portland in 2017.

Acting Police Chief Peter Mahuna announced Sgt. Tony Reeves was fired because of his actions in the scandal.


"The West Linn Police Department is committed to acknowledging our mistakes, and making necessary policy changes to prevent future misconduct and loss of trust moving forward," Mahuna said in a statement. "Sgt. Reeves also caused harm to the image and professionalism of the West Linn Police Department."

Reeves led an investigation into Michael Fesser, a Black man who was put under surveillance by West Linn police officers after reporting racial harassment to his boss, Eric Benson, the owner of Southeast Portland’s A&B Towing.

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Rather than address the concerns, Benson asked his friend, then West Linn Police Chief Terry Timeus, to investigate allegations that Fesser was stealing from the company.


West Linn police officers followed Fesser and ultimately arrested him without probable cause on Feb. 25, 2017, with the assistance of five Portland Police Bureau officers.

Fesser later sued West Linn and received a $600,000 settlement.

Last month, the Clackamas County district attorney's office released an investigation into the incident, which found that Reeves engaged in misconduct and that said they would no longer call him as a witness during criminal trials.

Mahuna said that was part of his reason for firing Reeves.

In addition, Mahuna said Reeves provided evidence from Fesser's vehicle to Benson, something the DA's report noted was additional misconduct on Reeves' part.

Mahuna said he also fired Reeves for "the intentional deletion of homophobic, racist and misogynistic text messages with Mr. Benson, and the irreparable loss of public trust and confidence in his ability to be a fair and unbiased police officer."

The Clackamas County district attorney recommend the state revoke both Reeves and Timeus’ police certifications.

The U.S. attorney for Oregon’s office is conducting a separate criminal investigation.