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Deschutes commissioners OK Nelson as next sheriff


Deschutes County commissioners unanimously backed retiring Deschutes County Sheriff Larry Blanton’s pick for his successor Wednesday, voting to appoint Capt. Shane Nelson to the position, effective July 1.

Nelson, 44, will serve the remaining term of office for Blanton, whose current term was set to end in January 2017. The next four-year term for sheriff is up for election next year, and Nelson confirmed he will run for the position.

Nelson has been in Oregon law enforcement for more than 20 years. Most recently, he served as the agency’s Operations Division commander.

He was born and raised in Bend and graduated from Mountain View High School in 1988. After graduating from Oregon State University in 1993, he moved back to Bend.

“The Sheriff’s office provides search and rescue, rural patrol, jail operations and investigation services to residents of the county, said Commission Chair Tony DeBone. “Shane has a deep knowledge of each of these aspects of the office, and we are confident in his leadership. He will help to continue the positive and healthy public safety culture that exists in our county.”

Nelson’s career history at Deschutes County is as follows: 1993 Reserve Deputy, 1994 Patrol Deputy Sheriff, 1999 Corporal, 2001 Criminal Detective, 2003 Patrol Sergeant, 2006 Patrol Lieutenant, 2010 Administrative Lieutenant, 2012 Operations Division Commander, 2013 Corrections Division Commander.

Of his appointment, Nelson said, “I am humbled by the opportunity to serve the residents of Deschutes County as their ninth sheriff. Together with the excellent men and women that serve at the Sheriff’s Office, I look forward to continuing Sheriff Blanton’s legacy of providing proactive services and delivering the quality public safety our citizens expect and deserve.”

Blanton said, “I’m very proud of the command staff (Captain Nelson, Captain Beard and Captain Utter) for helping me provide public safety and quality of life to the residents we serve at the sheriff’s office.

“I would like to thank the county commissioners and administration for their assistance. Captain Nelson will make a great sheriff because he has the knowledge, the experience and the support of the employees at the sheriff’s office. It has truly been an honor for me to have the opportunity to serve as Deschutes County sheriff.”

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