Springfield police chief retires while on leave

Richard Lewis has been on paid administrative leave since the end of March due to an investigation.

Posted: May 19, 2021 2:54 PM
Updated: May 20, 2021 7:01 AM

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. – Embattled Springfield Police Chief Richard Lewis is retiring, roughly six weeks after being placed on administrative leave.

City Manager Nancy Newton said his retirement is effective June 1.

Lewis has been under fire for months, accused of mishandling a sex scandal involving a female police recruit and two veteran officers. Lewis fired the recruit, but not the officers who allegedly had sex with her.

A former Woodburn police chief was hired to investigate complaints against Lewis, but city leaders have steadfastly refused to give details on the investigation or why Lewis was placed on leave.

Other officers, including Det. Robert Weaver, were also placed on leave following the scandal.

Andrew Shearer, formerly with Portland Police, will step in as interim chief.

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