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Deputy Cleared Of Brutality Charges

Plaintiff threatens lawsuit against sheriff's office

FALLS CITY -- An outside investigation has found Polk County Deputy Dustin Newman did not use excessive force during the Sept. 24 arrest of a Falls City woman.

Sheriff Bob Wolfe has received notice that the woman, Tanya Lauder, intends to sue the Sheriff's Office in Polk County Circuit Court.

Wolfe asked Linn County Sheriff Dave Burright to investigate the arrest after Lauder injured her head. According to the initial police report, Lauder fell against her truck's door.

Newman used pepper spray during the arrest. Witnesses claim Newman also struck Lauder and drew his gun.

Linn County Lt. Scott Barnes found Newman had followed Polk County policy in the arrest. He also found Newman had reason to stop and arrest Lauder.

Barnes could not confirm accounts that Newman had struck Lauder.

Newman used only as much force as needed to overcome Lauder's resistance, Wolfe said. Lauder had, according to the report, gotten back into her truck and said she would drive away.

Lauder was taken by ambulance to Salem Hospital, where she was treated for the head injury and blood loss. She registered a .33 blood-alcohol level -- more than four times the legal limit -- and tested positive for marijuana use.

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