Carson resident Joshua Gines has pleaded not guilty to two felony charges during his arraignment in Skamania County Superior Court in Stevenson last week.
Skamania County Sheriff's Office Undersheriff David Cox explained that Gines was formally charged with two crimes at his arraignment: one count of alleged child molestation in the first degree, and one count of alleged incest in the second degree.
Gines, an officer with the Bingen-White Salmon Police Department, entered the not guilty pleas in a court hearing on Jan. 28.
"Gines was an applicant for a Skamania County Sheriff's Office Road Deputy position, and during the background investigation, information was discovered that led to this criminal investigation," Cox explained in a press release. "As this is an ongoing investigation, no further information will be released at this time."
Gines, an officer with the Police Department since 2006, had a preliminary appearance in Superior Court on Jan. 25. At that court appearance, Judge E. Thompson Reynolds set his bail at $50,000.
Gines posted bond late on Jan. 25 and was released.
"He remains out of custody on court-imposed conditions of release and bond," Cox reported.
Gines has been placed on paid administrative leave by the Bingen-White Salmon Police Department.
"We're living in a country where you're innocent until proven guilty," said White Salmon Mayor David Poucher. "I believe in our system. Let's let Skamania County do its investigation, and let the system work."