Clackamas deputy pleads not guilty in assault case

Vancouver man accused of slamming stepson's head into wall

By Laura McVicker, Columbian staff writer

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A Clackamas County sheriff’s patrol sergeant who lives in Vancouver pleaded not guilty Tuesday to assaulting his 22-year-old stepson.

Steven P. Hyson, 46, was arraigned on charges of second-degree assault domestic violence for allegedly slamming his stepson’s head into a wall during an argument May 1. Hyson also was charged with fourth-degree assault for allegedly shoving his wife, Lora Hyson, and third-degree malicious mischief for allegedly causing property damage at the family’s home.

Trial was set for Aug. 8.

Authorities said Hyson’s 22-year-old stepson, Austin Brown-Oliver, said the conflict arose when he questioned Hyson about why he wasn’t intervening when Hyson’s 12-year-old son was yelling at Hyson’s wife.

This led to an argument between Hyson and his stepson on the front porch of the home. Hyson reportedly ripped the stepson’s T-shirt and tried to provoke him to fight by saying “Go ahead and hit me” and “Are you a tough guy?” according to court documents.

Brown-Oliver told investigators that as he attempted to walk away, Hyson grabbed him by the head and shoulder and spun him into the side of the house, according to the probable cause affidavit signed by sheriff’s Detective Todd Barsness.

Hyson’s wife called 911, and Brown-Oliver was treated at PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center for a broken cheek bone. Hyson turned himself in to Clark County sheriff’s deputies May 3.

The president of a union representing Clackamas County sheriff’s deputies, Hyson was placed on administrative leave, pending the outcome of the case.

Hyson posted bond and has been released from the Clark County Jail.