- Associated Press - Wednesday, June 3, 2015

SALEM, Ore. (AP) - An Oregon technology manager who leaked former Gov. John Kitzhaber’s emails to a reporter will not face criminal charges, prosecutors said Wednesday.

The district attorneys of Marion and Yamhill counties said they believe Michael Rodgers broke the law, but “justice would not be served” by charging him.

Rodgers gave Willamette Week 6,000 emails that Kitzhaber had sought to delete from state servers. He has said he was concerned that the former governor was trying to destroy public records - a claim that Kitzhaber’s lawyers deny.

“The goal of any district attorney in any case is to obtain a just result,” the prosecutors wrote in a joint statement to the media.

The prosecutors said Rodgers committed the crime of official misconduct in the second degree, a misdemeanor. But they said his decision to release the emails apparently “stems from extraordinary circumstances seemingly unparalleled in the Oregon political landscape.”

Rodgers is on leave from his job at the Department of Administrative Services, where he was the acting administrator overseeing the technology used across state government.

In February, a staffer in Kitzhaber’s office asked that the then-governor’s emails be removed from state servers, but Rodgers refused.

In a story published last week in Willamette Week, Rodgers explained that he gave emails to the newspaper because he didn’t know where else to turn.

Kitzhaber advisers later said the emails were from a personal account and should not have been archived on state servers, and those pertaining to public business would not have been destroyed.

Gov. Kate Brown, who took office when Kitzhaber resigned under pressure amid questions about his fiancee’s business, said Tuesday that she did not believe Rodgers should be prosecuted.

The case falls in the jurisdiction of Marion County District Attorney Walt Beglau. Because a relative of Kitzhaber’s works for Beglau, the prosecutor says he consulted with Yamhill County District Attorney Brad Berry and both agreed with the decision.

The prosecutors wrote that Rodgers never acknowledged to Oregon State Police investigators that he leaked the documents.

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