By Richard Cockle
JOHN DAY, Ore. — Grant County Sheriff Glenn Palmer was the second lawman on scene 21 years ago when an intoxicated logger named Sidney Dean Porter beat a John Day police officer to death with a chunk of firewood.
Officer Frank L. Ward, 39, was responding to an after-midnight complaint of domestic abuse and loud music at Porter's home on April 8, 1992.
Entering the home, Ward found the 6-foot-5, 225-pound Porter assaulting his wife and pepper-sprayed the man.
The 32-year-old Porter was convicted of aggravated murder and sentenced to life in prison.
Now, the Oregon Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision has put that deadly night front and center once again by agreeing to release Porter on June 7.
The decision has caught the attention of lawmakers, police chiefs, district attorneys and law enforcement officers across the state.
Full Story: Grant County man who beat officer to death to be released in June