Bend▶️ Judge’s involvement complicates Bend murder investigation

▶️ Judge’s involvement complicates Bend murder investigation

▶️ Judge’s involvement complicates Bend murder investigation

Los Serranos Drive murder investigation

If there is a trial in the murder of a Bend man who was killed earlier this month, the case will be handled by a judge outside Deschutes County. That’s after a Deschutes County Circuit Court judge showed up and spoke to the victim’s wife while she was being interviewed by law enforcement.

70-year-old Leonard Raymond Peverieri was killed Oct. 9 at his home on Los Serranos Drive just east of Bend. So far, no arrests have been made and no information on any suspects has been released.

District Attorney John Hummel confirmed to Central Oregon Daily News Wednesday that Judge Bethany Flint showed up while Peverieri’s wife was being interviewed by deputies and spoke with her. Hummel said Flint and the wife are friends.

In a letter to Central Oregon Daily News on Tuesday afternoon, Presiding Deschutes County Judge Wells Ashby said Judge Flint told him the day after the incident that she had become involved, but he didn’t go into specifics of how.

“At the conclusion of our discussion, I asked Judge Flint to have no further involvement with the investigation and she agreed. Additional steps were then taken to better understand the situation,” Ashby wrote.

RELATED: DCSO: Murder investigation in east Bend after 70-year-old man dies

RELATED: Identity of Bend man killed in eastside murder investigation released

Ashby said he learned enough to convince him that the case should be handed by a judge in another county, if it came to that. Ashby said the transfer took place last week.

“As presiding judge, I am responsible for the court and for maintaining the public’s trust and confidence in the court and the judicial system. Preserving both the fact and appearance of impartiality and independence is essential to preserving confidence in our court system,” Ashby wrote. “The decision to have this matter handled by a judge from another circuit court was made in support of those values and consistent with the duties of a presiding judge.”

It’s not clear if a trial, should it happen, would be moved out of Deschutes County or if a judge from another county would simply be brought in to preside.

Ashby said Flint will not be making a statement at this time due to the ongoing investigation.

Here is Ashby’s full statement:

“Judge Flint shared with me that she became involved in a matter that was under investigation. The matter under investigation occurred on a Sunday and our discussion took place Monday morning at the courthouse.

At the conclusion of our discussion, I asked Judge Flint to have no further involvement with the investigation and she agreed. Additional steps were then taken to better understand the situation.

I learned enough information to be convinced that this matter should be handled by a judge from another circuit court. This transfer took place last week.

As presiding judge, I am responsible for the court and for maintaining the public’s trust and confidence in the court and the judicial system. Preserving both the fact and appearance of impartiality and independence is essential to preserving confidence in our court system. The decision to have this matter handled by a judge from another circuit court was made in support of those values and consistent with the duties of a presiding judge.

Because the investigation is ongoing, and out of respect for those most impacted, Judge Flint will not be making a statement at this time.”

CentralOregonDaily.com
CentralOregonDaily.comhttps://centraloregondaily.com/
Central Oregon Daily is Television in Central Oregon … on-air, on-line & on-the-go. We are KOHD – Central Oregon’s ABC, KBNZ – CBS for Central Oregon, and local programming on Central Oregon Daily, COTV and CO4 Visitors Network. We are storytellers of all that matters to Central Oregonians.

Subscribe Today

GET EXCLUSIVE ACCESS TO CONTENT

SUPPORT LOCAL JOURNALISM

NEWS FROM 30+ MEDIA SOURCES

250,000+ LOYAL READERS EACH YEAR

Get unlimited access to our news content and our archive of Central Oregon stories.

Top Stories

More Articles