This story was updated Friday with comments from Sheriff Brian Burnett.
WENATCHEE — Deputy Jennifer Tyler was fired Aug. 29 from the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office after nine months on paid administrative leave.
The controversial deputy was placed on leave last December shortly after an unsuccessful bid for the position of Chelan County Sheriff against Sheriff Brian Burnett.
“I trust the justice system and have no doubt just like the many times before I will prevail,” Tyler said Thursday. “I am confident my legal team will move swiftly as I am assured there are already unfair labor practice violations filed on my behalf.”
In a statement Friday, Burnett said the Chelan County Human Resources Department received multiple workplace complaints in December 2018 against Tyler. Specifics of the complaints were not disclosed.
The Spokane County Sheriff's Office was brought in to investigate the complaints along with human resources. Their findings resulted in Tyler's termination, Burnett said.
Tyler will be afforded due process rights, which allow her to appeal her termination, Burnett said.
Tyler was fired from the department once before in 2010 and then reinstated in 2013 after an arbitrator ruled she was wrongfully terminated. She was awarded $500,000 in a subsequent lawsuit against the department.
Tyler filed a lawsuit against the department in May alleging continued retaliation, discrimination, harassment and negligence in the workplace. She intends to add a claim of wrongful termination to the suit, her attorney, Mike Kelly, said on Thursday.
She filed for the 2018 election as a write-in candidate a few days before the primary election and earned enough votes to have her name on the general election ballot. She lost to Burnett, with 35% of the vote to Burnett’s 65%.
During her campaign, Tyler released a photograph of a profane PowerPoint slide used in a department training session. She was openly critical of Burnett’s handling of personnel matters, her own treatment by colleagues following her lawsuit, the department’s handling of a missing M16 rifle, and a 2016 incident in which a K-9 died after being struck by a deputy’s patrol car.