SALT LAKE CITY — A judge has dismissed charges against San Juan County Sheriff Rick Eldredge in a case where he was accused of threatening an employee with a rifle and firing the employee in 2015 in retaliation for reporting the incident.

Judge George Harmond on Wednesday also dismissed related charges against two San Juan sheriff’s deputies, saying there wasn’t enough evidence in the three cases.

Eldredge was charged in May with witness retaliation and three misdemeanors: official misconduct, reckless endangerment and obstruction of justice.

The Deseret News reports Harmond said in his ruling that it’s clear the employee was fired for his performance, not the incident with Eldredge.

Eldredge’s attorney Peter Stirba called it a “complete vindication” of what he and his client had said all along.

Information from: Deseret News,

Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.