Umatilla Candidate Admits HE Wrote Shocking Racist Letter Himself
According to Hermiston Police officials, Pastor and Commissioner Candidate Jonathan Lopez told police he wrote the shocking letter himself.
Back in May, Lopez ran for a Umatilla County Commissioner position but didn't make it past the primary. Then just prior to June 24, he said he had received a racist threatening letter concerning him, his family, and his political efforts. The letter was supposedly found in his mailbox.
In a June 24 story, we told you about the letter, and provided a link to read it yourself. The letter, which contained bad grammar and numerous misspellings, was investigated by Hermiston Police. The story generated headlines in Tri-Cities and all over the Northwest.
Monday, July 6, the East Oregonian reported Hermiston Police Chief Jason Edmiston said Lopez in an email "admitted" to writing the letter. It had been left anonymously in his mailbox, is what Lopez originally told police.
According to the East Oregonian, Edmiston said the police investigation has shown that the letter was indeed written by Lopez himself, and he also made false statements to social media and the police. The East Oregonian says Lopez claims he only meant to speak to Edmiston about the issue of race in Umatilla County, and use the letter as an example of the type of racism people face, and it spiraled out of control.
However the East Oregonian said that on June 24 he told a reporter he found the letter in his mailbox when he got home, and he confirmed he told the police the same story.
Edmiston also reports that the Hermiston Police Department has been following up on potentially false statements Lopez made concerning information he included in the voter's guide for the Commissioner's race. Lopez claimed to have served in the US Coast Guard, but Edmiston says police cannot find any verification of that. He never served, which police say is a violation of the 2013 Stolen Valor Act. It provides criminal prosecution for people who make fake claims of military service.
HPD says Lopez has not provided any proof of such service.
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