The Thurston County Sheriff’s Office referred a charge of fourth-degree assault against Tenino Mayor Wayne Fournier to the county’s prosecuting attorney’s office for consideration.
A representative from the prosecutor’s office said the information filed is still being reviewed and that no decision has been made. Meanwhile, Fournier’s attorney Justin Kover said he believes there won’t be charges filed based on evidence he’s seen.
According to Lt. Ray Brady with TCSO, in the early morning hours of July 28, Fournier and some friends were having drinks at the Eagle’s Club in Tenino. At some point, Brady said, they had their drinks taken away from them after they started “causing some issues” at the establishment — like standing at the end of the bar and not letting staff through.
An employee at the Eagle’s Club reported that Fournier hit her in the chest as she walked past. The same employee alleged she picked up a phone, advised them that they needed to leave and that Fournier then struck the phone out of her hand, said Brady.
The Tenino Police Department originally responded to the case, but then requested the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office conduct the investigation, due to Fournier being the mayor of their jurisdiction.
Brady said the investigation has since been completed, and referred to the prosecutor’s office for consideration of charges. Investigators have interviewed the alleged victim, witnesses and Fournier, he said.
A representative at the Thurston County Prosecutor’s Office said the case was under review, but that no decision to move forward with charges had been made yet.
Kover said he and Fournier “categorically deny the accusation against him. Wayne didn’t hit anybody.”
He went on to say that he believes the investigation won’t result in charges based on the information available, and that a video of the alleged incident proves his client’s innocence.