A complaint was filed on July 17 by William Templeton of Albany, on behalf of himself and several family members associated with the marijuana operation at Butte Creek Estates.
According to a report by the Government Ethics Commission, Mark Owenby and Michelle Page purchased the property in December 2016. The couple began developing a medical marijuana growing operation, including constructing a large greenhouse.
The commission report notes that additional investigation will be necessary to “determine whether Mr. Lindsey used means of access to county resources not available to the public, whether the nature of Mr. Lindsey’s position influenced county staff’s responsiveness, or whether Mr. Lindsey directed county staff to spend time working on the matter.”
Templeton also said Lindsey made photocopies of the property owners’ Oregon Medical Marijuana Program cards and permits.
The report also noted that had Lindsey made statements such as “what you are doing is illegal,” or “you picked the wrong neighborhood,” while presenting himself in an official capacity, he "may have been attempting to use the influence of his position to stop the medical marijuana grow in his neighborhood in order to avoid a personal financial detriment.”
“There appears to be substantial objective basis to believe that one or more violations of Oregon Government Ethics law may have occurred as a result of Mr. Lindsey’s actions in relation to the marijuana being grown on Mr. Owenby and Ms. Page’s property in his neighborhood. The Oregon Government Ethics Commission should move to investigate whether John Lindsey may have violated ORS 244.040(1), ORS 244.040(4) and ORS 244.120(2 (Motion 4),” said the report approved by Ronald Bersin, the commission's executive director.
The Oregon Government Ethics Commission will investigate whether Linn County Commissioner John Lindsey violated state ethics laws by attempting to use his position to stop medical marijuana from being grown in his neighborhood south of Lebanon.