SALEM, Ore. – Workers at a central Oregon landfill became suspicious when former Gov. John Kitzhaber and his fiancée, Cylvia Hayes, showed up to dump some trash last week.
With federal investigators looking into the scandal that forced Kitzhaber to resign last week, the landfill workers called authorities after the first couple paid a visit.
Deschutes County sheriff's deputies poked through the couple's trash for about an hour, Timm Schimke, director of the county's solid waste department, told the Bend Bulletin (http://bit.ly/1BKbtcP). The Knott Landfill is located just outside Bend, where Hayes owns a home.
"They looked like any other people who were cleaning out their garage or cleaning out a rental. It was just stuff," Schimke said. "They weren't manipulating the stuff. They were just tossing it out, and they were only in there for two or three minutes and then they left."
Their trash included old campaign signs for Hayes, who ran for the Legislature more than a decade ago, and a mattress or box spring, Schimke said.
Kitzhaber resigned last week under pressure over Hayes' work for advocacy groups with an interest in state policy. Federal authorities are investigating. Kitzhaber has denied the couple did anything wrong.
"It just seemed strange that they were at a transfer station dumping waste so soon after him resigning and them being under investigation," Schimke said.
Darryl Nakahira, legal counsel at the Sheriff's Office, is forwarding all questions and requests for information to the FBI, which doesn't respond to inquiries involving ongoing criminal investigations.
Information from: The Bulletin, http://www.bendbulletin.com