Police fire sergeant linked to Gladstone killing - KPTV - FOX 12

Police fire sergeant linked to Gladstone killing

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Sgt. Lynn Benton Sgt. Lynn Benton
Susan Campbell Susan Campbell
GLADSTONE, OR (KPTV) -

A Gladstone police sergeant accused of paying a woman to kill his estranged wife has been fired.

Lynn Benton had been on administrative leave since the shooting death of Debbie Higbee-Benton in May.

Officers say they began investigating two "serious allegations" against Benton four months ago, but the accusations were not related to the murder investigation.

Benton has not been arrested in Higbee-Benton's death, though a detective testified earlier this month that Benton was behind the plan to kill his wife and offered a woman named Susan Campbell $2,000 to carry out the killing at Higbee-Benton's salon.

Detectives also said calls were placed between Benton and Campbell every day before the murder, the day of the murder and after.

Neighbors previously told FOX 12 that Campbell had provided hospice-type care for Benton's relatives. Earlier in the investigation, police described Campbell and Higbee-Benton as acquaintances, but didn't elaborate.

Benton hired an attorney in June after police searched her sister's Troutdale home. Officers didn't provide details about what, if anything, they found.

Benton was born a woman but, after an on-going gender reassignment process, is living as a man.

Benton and Higbee-Benton were partners for several years but became estranged last spring.

Previous stories:

Dec. 15, 2011: Police sergeant accused of plotting Gladstone murder
June 7, 2011: Officer's Family Served With Search Warrant
June 3, 2011: Gladstone Woman Arrested In Salon Owner's Death
June 2, 2011: Gladstone Death Sparks Homicide Investigation

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