LEWISTON – Nez Perce County commissioners will vote Monday on whether to declare the sheriff’s post vacant; they apparently haven’t been able to reach Sheriff Jim Dorion for weeks.
Dorion started a 90-day paid medical leave four months ago, after telling county officials he had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, the Lewiston Tribune reported. But that leave expired Aug. 1, and county leaders haven’t received a request for a second 90-day leave that would allow Dorion to seek a disability retirement.
Commissioners have requested documentation of Dorion’s medical condition in order to continue the leave for another 90 days, a request they say has gone unanswered.
“We have tried to contact him through the contact number he provided when he commenced his 90-day leave, and have been unable to contact him through that method,” Nez Perce County Prosecutor Dan Spickler said Friday.
Dorion did not immediately return a phone message left by The Associated Press on Saturday, though a woman who answered the phone and didn’t give her name said she would pass on the message.
Idaho code allows any civil office to be declared vacant when that officer ceases to be a resident of the district or county where they exercise their duties.
The Nez Perce County assessor’s office no longer lists Dorion as the owner of a home in the Lewiston Orchards. Boise attorney Joseph P. Filicetti, Dorion’s attorney of record who represented the sheriff at the May 1 news conference, said earlier this week he has been unable to contact his client.
Spickler said he consulted the Idaho Association of Counties regarding the case, and he said this was the first instance of possibly having to declare a vacancy he had come across in Idaho law.