The Tillamook County Sheriff's Office has investigated an incident involving James "Ace" Neikes and a Clatsop County employee that allegedly took place Tuesday.

Clatsop County Sheriff Tom Bergin said he referred the case to Tillamook County so there would be no question of conflict of interest concerning his office.

Neikes is one of four men seeking to be appointed as a county commissioner Wednesday following the recall of Richard Lee.

A report released today said the Tillamook detective, Troy Jackson, responded Thursday to a report of menacing against Gregg Bonham, a Clatsop County employee.

In his duties as a county employee, Bonham was directed to inspect a property at 37906 U.S. Route 30. Bonham thought the property belonged to a brother of Neikes, who he had worked with in the past.

Bonham reported that he'd been asked by his office not to have any contact with Neikes, but after 10 minutes Neikes parked a vehicle behind Bonham's, blocking him in.

Jackson reported that Bonham told him Neikes stepped out of his vehicle and said, "Now that I have you blocked in, you are not going anywhere."

Bonham reported speaking with Neikes about a previous incident involving an old log landing property. He told detectives Neikes said Bonham "... needed to do a better job of making planning decisions in A/F-zoned lands."

Bonham reported that although Neikes never raised his voice, he said, "People sure could disappear down under my new road and not be found."

Bonham told the detectives he thought that statement was directed at him.

The detectives' report didn't include conversations they had with Neikes, but did include a conclusion.

"After conferring with Detective Garcia, and based on interviews and the history of Neikes, we believe that Neikes' behavior, although disturbing and unprofessional, were not criminal in nature," the report said. "It was our opinion that any further investigation was unwarranted and would possibly inflame the situation between the Neikes' and the county Planning Office.

After discussion with Sheriff Bergin, he agreed.

"It is however known to us that Neikes is on formal probation with the Clatsop County, a copy of this report should be forwarded to his probation officer for their review and any action they feel is warranted."

Commissioners are scheduled to appoint Lee's replacement during a special session at 6 p.m. Wednesday in Courtroom 300 of the Clatsop County Courthouse. The replacement will serve out the final three years in Lee's term without facing election.

The Daily Astorian recently reported that Neikes pleaded guilty to fourth-degree assault and strangulation Nov. 9 for an incident involving his wife. He is on probation for those convictions.

Clatsop County District Attorney Josh Marquis said this morning that his office would not pursue charges against Neikes, but he doesn't know what effect it would have on Neikes' probation. "That's up to his probation officer," Marquis said.


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