Ranch Matters CRR

A freelance news gathering service

Part of an award winning journalism team
Providing an interactive investigative news site designed to inform & elicit communication focusing on matters impacting Crooked River Ranch matters & beyond


9/25/20, 6:35 PM


On June 1, 2020, we posted a story titled, “SPIES LIKE US” regarding an interview with former Crooked River Ranch (CRR) General Maintenance Supervisor, Steve Swigart. Mr. Swigart shared some thoughts and experiences that included the disturbing.

Swigart explained there’s a “HIT LIST or BAD GUY LIST” maintained by Ranch Manager Judy Lapora that contains at least “10 Association Members-Stevens and Stangland are at the top.” Additionally, Swigart confirmed Lapora told him that we (Stevens and Stangland) are “DANGEROUS, CRAZY and TROUBLEMAKERS” confirming exactly what former Ranch Director, Carol Orr was told by Lapora.

Swigart explained he had “many responsibilities as the Ranch General Maintenance Supervisor.” However, one particular task that was “ODD/OFF BASE” and assigned by Lapora, directed him to search for “BUGS-Electronic Eavesdropping Devices in the Juniper Room.”

Swigart said Lapora ordered the Juniper Room searched for BUGS at “least two times” after Ranch Matters had rented the room. Lapora told him she was afraid we had planted listening devices throughout the room and he looked under chairs, tables, and behind pictures to no avail. Swigart called it a “waste of time and paranoia on Lapora’s part.”

The planting of electronic eavesdropping devices is illegal and any accusation by Lapora that we engaged in unlawful activity is reckless and “disturbing.”

According to Swigart, Lapora’s paranoia is supposedly based on a Ranch Matters Staff member who also is licensed by the Oregon Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST) as a private investigator. Lapora told Swigart “we are spies with the ability and background to plant the devices.”  Swigart saw the humor in Lapora’s paranoia acknowledging at the same time how serious and reckless her accusations really are.

At the January 20, 2020, CRR/BOD Meeting, Ranch VP, Bill Burt publicly accused Ranch Matters-Stevens and Stangland of “HATE SPEECH” and indicated a report had been filed with law enforcement. Immediately after the meeting, Burt aggressively approached Ranch Matters-Brenda Stevens and stated, “YOU JUST KEEP IT UP, AND YOU WILL SEE WHAT HAPPENS.”

At the next CRR/BOD Meeting on February 3, 2020, the Directors adjourned to Executive Session. Nothing new or unusual about that, except for one thing. Former Ranch President, Dave Palmer was “invited” to attend. Palmer is no longer a Director or Officer of the Association, but nevertheless was allowed to attend? According to the Meeting Minutes: “President Carl Harbour noted the purpose of the Executive Session was to discuss the 2016 Election Lawsuit.” “No action was taken.”


Last June Ranch Matters learned for the first time, that on February 20, 2020, Dave Palmer submitted a COMPLAINT against John Stevens’ private investigators license with DPSST.


DPSST Investigator, Karen R. Evans stated: “As you may know, this investigation is related to your involvement with Crooked River Ranch Association.”

Ms. Evans later confirmed there was a second COMPLAINT dated March 12, 2020 and on April 20, 2020, DPSST received an addendum to the second COMPLAINT.

The DPPST COMPLAINTS and the conduct of the CRR leadership, triggered the involvement of the national Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press (RCFP).

On August 19, 2020, a Portland attorney working with the RCFP sent the Following letter to DPSST.

Today, we met with Swigart and showed him the letter.

He stated, “IT’S SPOT ON” meaning the statements contained in the letter alluding to harassment by certain Ranch leaders against Ranch Matters-Stevens and Stangland is an understatement.

Swigart added, their “HIT LIST or BAD GUY LIST” and the DPSST COMPLAINTS is just another example of how the Ranch leaders are using the DPSST to further their personal agenda against Ranch Matters-Stevens & Stangland.

Ranch Matters Staff