DA denies Nye County Sheriff’s Office request to prosecute two supervisors
Lt. Adam Tippets and Sgt. Cory Fowles were allowed to return to work from leave.
The Nye County District Attorney on Wednesday denied the sheriff’s request to prosecute two supervisors over their conduct on social media.
Nye County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Adam Tippets and Sgt. Cory Fowles had been facing a charge of an unlawful act on a computer and interference using a computer, according to a Monday statement from the sheriff’s office.
Tippets and Fowles allegedly shut Capt. David Boruchowitz out of a non-work-related Facebook politics page that the three of them run, according to the DA’s statement.
“After carefully looking at the allegations and relevant laws, and personally reviewing the legislative history of the relevant laws, I can say with complete certainty that the allegations here are clearly not a criminal matter,” Nye County District Attorney Chris Arabia said in the statement. “The laws at issue are meant to protect against things like serious financial fraud/theft, industrial espionage, and blocking people from computer systems or networks. These laws are not meant to resolve private disputes among people running a Facebook page.”
Arabia said it was concerning that the sheriff’s office submitted a nine-page summary of the investigation while the department has sent over one- to two-page summaries for sexual assault cases sent to the DA.
The sheriff’s office said Wednesday that Tippets and Fowles, who had previously been placed on leave, were allowed to return to work.
“In this case, two supervisors were accused of crimes and an investigator determined there was probable cause to submit the case for prosecution,” the sheriff’s office said in a statement. “The standard of probable cause is the lowest level of proof required in the criminal justice system. As a precaution when probable cause is determined to exist officers are placed on administrative leave, as is customary in all agencies across the nation.”
The supervisors told the Pahrump Valley Times earlier this week they were being retaliated against for forming a Political Action Committee (PAC) in support of the sheriff’s rival.
For more on this story see Friday’s print edition of the Pahrump Valley Times.
Contact David Wilson at email@example.com. Follow @davidwilson_RJ on Twitter.