- Associated Press - Sunday, March 6, 2016

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) - The University of Oregon has paid its police chief $46,000 to leave the job with four months left on her yearly contract.

Officials say her retaliation against an officer who spoke out against department bias and mismanagement helped cost the university at least $1.5 million in damages and legal bills in a whistleblower lawsuit.

The Oregonian reports (http://is.gd/ICCWTZ ) Carolyn McDermed left days before a federal judge reconfirmed a $755,000 jury award against her and her department in a whistleblower case. The jury’s decision indicated they believed she retaliated unlawfully against an employee who complained about her leadership, then lied about it on the witness stand.

McDermed made $139,000 a year.

University spokesman Tobin Klinger declined to say why McDermed’s bosses wanted her gone so badly that they paid her to leave. Her total payout, $53,000, included two weeks of accrued vacation.

Klinger disclosed the payment in response to a public records request from The Oregonian.

Both McDermed and Klinger characterized her departure as a retirement.

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Information from: The Oregonian, http://www.oregonlive.com

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