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Former Switz Co. Official Accused Of Theft Now Running For Elected Office

Posted On February 08, 2016

By Mike Perleberg

switzerland-county-ballot-candidates-clerkin-02082016

Former Switzerland County Highway Department superintendent Christopher Clerkin has filed to run for county commissioner in the May 3, 2016 Republican primary election. Photo by Mike Perleberg, Eagle Country 99.3.

(Switzerland County, Ind.) – A former highway superintendent currently facing criminal charges for taking county money is running for Switzerland County Commissioner.

In May 2014, then-county highway superintendent Christopher Clerkin was arrested for allegedly keeping money generated through the sale of scrap metal from the highway department.

Now, Clerkin has filed to run in the May 3rd Republican primary election for Switzerland County’s District 1 County Commissioner. He is seeking the party’s nomination over incumbent commissioner Josh South.

On Monday, Clerkin asserted that his criminal case is not motivation for running for commissioner.

“There were things going on that I don’t approve of. I was highway superintendent for 14 years,” he said. “I just don’t agree with the leadership right now of the commissioners.”

Clerkin is scheduled to go to trial April 18 on charges of Theft, Official Misconduct, and Violation of the Depository Rule – all class D felonies. A special judge and prosecutor from Ripley County have been assigned to the case.

He maintains his innocence.

“What king of fool would put his name out there if he was guilty of something?” Clerkin said.

If convicted of a felony, Clerking could become ineligible to hold public office.

Following his 2014 arrest, Clerkin was suspended without pay. He said he was terminated from his job with the county at the start of 2015 and now works as an EMT in the county.

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