“Brandon and I just want to go back to work, that’s the long and short of it,” Norwood Marshal Dean Boehler said in an interview with The Watch this week.
That interview then became in issue in itself in the escalating battle of wills surrounding the placement of Boehler’s deputy, Brandon Jamison, on paid administrative leave last week for allegedly making inappropriate comments about underage girls at Norwood High School.
That’s because Boehler and John Mansfield, a member of the town’s Board of Trustees who is also the police commissioner, are sharply at odds over how the Jamison investigation has been conducted.
Boehler acknowledged that he was asked by Mansfield to refrain from speaking to the media about the personnel related issue, that he understood the consequences if he did speak to a reporter. Yet, he spoke to this reporter nonetheless.
In response, Mansfield placed the marshal on paid administrative leave.
For his part, Mansfield has declined to go on the record. That’s despite interview requests by Western Slope media outlets over issues related to the Jamison investigation, and, Boehler’s being taken off duty.
“I have been called by the Grand Junction Sentinel, the Montrose paper, KOTO, The Watch and The Denver Post, everyone but the Norwood Post,” Mansfield said Tuesday night. “It gotten to the point where I have refused to answer the phone.”
Boehler, on the other hand, is responding to media requests. He said he believes the various investigations of Jamison by the San Miguel County Sheriffs Department, town officials, as well as The Watch, resulted in verification of certain comments being confirmed and others dismissed as rumors. , has resulted in sufficient punishment for Jamison. He himself has “nothing to hide,” he said.
After being initially placed on and serving two days on paid administrative leave last week, Jamison was put back on indefinite administrative leave, with pay, on Thursday, Nov. 29.
The personnel changes came shortly after Norwood Marshal Dean Boehler told The Watch Thursday, Nov. 29, that Jamison had personally apologized to several families in Norwood regarding remarks he’d allegedly made to underage girls at Norwood High School.
But it wasn’t enough to keep town officials from reopening the investigation, which had originally been conducted by the sheriff’s office. Jamison was put back on paid administrative leave when additional information came to light that required further investigation, Mansfield said.
“There have been no formal complaints filed,” Boehler confirmed last week. “There were a couple of things investigated that came back to rumors, but nothing of substance. There were a couple of comments that he made, a couple of jokes, and they were things that weren’t appropriate, but it wasn’t something that was a major issue.”
Once Boehler was placed on administrative leave as well, sheriff’s deputies stepped in to handle emergency calls for Norwood.
“As soon as this happened, we began working closely with (San Miguel County Sheriff) Bill Masters,” Mansfield said. “They changed their schedule to make sure we got coverage.”
As this is going on, Boehler has been covering all of the bases. He’s made an account (or, “narrative”) of events available to the media. He’s garnered letters of support for Jamison, including those from family members he allegedly offended with his comments. But mostly, he’s talking out loud.
“This is definitely an area of principle,” the marshal said.
Said Mansfield, asked about any new development on all ongoing investigations, “I just can’t comment on that. I’m sorry.”