Former deputy posts $50,000 bail

By Katy Nesbitt, The Observer July 17, 2013 12:37 pm

A former Wallowa County deputy charged with shooting a La Grande man was released Tuesday night after attorneys on both sides reached an agreement on the conditions of bail. 

Daniel Courtney, 47, of Enterprise was released after posting $50,000 bail, which was originally set at $100,000, and with the condition he have no contact with his family members, according to Mona Williams, Wallowa County district attorney.

Courtney faces second-degree assault charges after he was arrested for a non-fatal shooting of a relative on his property property in rural Enterprise. No court date has been set for Courtney at this point, according to Williams.

Second-degree assault is a Class B Felony and a Measure 11 crime with a minimum prison sentence of 70 months and a maximum of 10 years, Williams said.

Courtney was hired as a full-time deputy for the Wallowa County Sheriff’s Department in 1999. He resigned in March 2012 due to health issues.

The victim, Randy Dickenson, 53, of La Grande was flown to a Boise, Idaho, hospital following the shooting where hospital officials say he remains in stable condition.

Police said the shooting occurred following a dispute outside Courtney’s home at 63885 Williamson Road in Enterprise. After the shooting Courtney, a resident at the address, remained on the property until he surrendered to police early Monday morning.

Court documents show a history of conflict between Courtney and Dickenson, along with other family members, through the years.

According to court documents, conflict arose between Courtney and family members over property willed to them in the early 1990s. In 2005, Courtney’s brother, Steven Strong, conveyed his undivided interest in the shared property to Courtney in exchange for payment of a debt, the court documents assert.

Court documents also claim that in 2006, Courtney’s sister, Donna Dickenson, conveyed her undivided interest in the same property to Courtney, also in exchange for his payment of a debt she had incurred.

This past April, Strong and Dickenson entered a lawsuit against Courtney, claiming they had not actually signed over their interest in the shared property, but had agreed that the land would be held as a mortgage until the debt was paid back to Courtney, the suit said, not in exchange for Courtney’s payment of their debts.

The conflict came to a head when Courtney was arrested in March for allegedly pointing a firearm at Steven Strong, Carleen Sasser and Randy Dickenson during an altercation at the Safeway store in Enterprise. The event was recorded by one of the store’s videotapes, and according to correspondence to Courtney from his attorney, Janie Burcart, the Department of Justice determined he had a right to defend himself. 

The case was dismissed in May.

Contact Katy Nesbitt at 541-786-4235 or This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it Follow Katy on Twitter @lgoNesbitt.