Charges against Gayton dismissed


By Jane Martin, News Writer


All charges against former football player Chandler Gayton were dismissed by the Cheney Municipal Court June 7, nearly 13 months after an arrest in downtown Cheney, according to the case disposition.

Gayton was arrested for allegedly displaying a gun near police officers in downtown Cheney on May 11, 2012, when police responded to a call about an altercation at Eagle’s Pub, according to police records.

On June 7, however, Gayton’s pretrial hearing with Cheney Municipal Court was cancelled and an order of dismissal without prejudice for all charges was signed by Judge Sara B. Derr, according to the case disposition.

The case disposition also states that the court took into consideration the fact that “[Gayton] stipulates and agrees that the Cheney police officers had probable cause to make the arrest of the defendant on May 11, 2012, and used reasonable force to effectuate the arrest/take the defendant into custody on same said date.”

The Spokane County Prosecutor’s Office dropped Gayton’s case last year before it went to court despite a recommendation from Cheney Police to pursue felony second-degree assault charges.

In an interview this past February, Spokane County Prosecuting Attorney Steven Tucker said that he made the final decision to decline the referral of the second-degree assault charge after he and his colleagues closely reviewed the arresting officers’ reports as well as the surveillance footage of the incident.

“We didn’t feel that an assault occurred,” said Tucker. “[Gayton] never actually pointed the gun at the officers.”