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OSU researcher, fugitive from Virginia, suspected of sex crimes there
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OSU researcher, fugitive from Virginia, suspected of sex crimes there

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An Oregon State University faculty researcher has been arrested on suspicion of sex crimes allegedly committed in Virginia. 

Brett Tyler, 66, was booked into Benton County Jail on Thursday, Oct. 7, and he is reportedly a fugitive from the state of Virginia, according to court paperwork. A warrant was issued for his arrest, and Tyler allegedly fled from justice in Virginia before being found in Benton County.

Tyler is the director of the Center for Quantitative Life Sciences at OSU. He has worked at the university since January 2012. 

OSU spokesman Steve Clark said Tyler resigned Tuesday as director of Center for Quantitative Life Sciences. Tyler also resigned from the university effective Nov. 30. He will be working remotely until that date. 

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The work of the center, described on its website as "the generation and applications of big data in all areas of life sciences research," will continue after Tyler is gone, Clark said. 

According to court documents, Tyler is charged in Virginia with two counts of forcible sodomy, two counts of taking indecent liberties with children and one count of aggravated sexual battery.

Benton County Circuit Court Judge Matthew Donohue set Tyler's bail at $200,000. Tyler was released on bail on Monday, Oct. 11. He was ordered not to have any contact with the victim or her family.

His next court appearance in the matter is set for Nov. 4 at 10:30 a.m., according to Oregon's online court database.

"We’re aware of this arrest and we will cooperate fully with investigations into this matter," Clark said. "As a policy and as a practice, OSU takes seriously all reported matters of misconduct involving our faculty, staff and students."

Maddie Pfeifer covers public safety for Mid-Valley Media. She can be contacted at 541-812-6091 or Madison.Pfeifer@lee.net. Follow her on Twitter via @maddiepfeifer_

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