A commission considering the suspension of an Athens County sheriff has suspended him from office.
Athens County Sheriff Pat Kelly has been indicted on 25 criminal charges that accuse him of money laundering, theft in office and corruption, among other allegations. He has vehemently denied the 25 felony counts of theft and corruption against him.
The Ohio Attorney General asked that the commission hold suspension proceedings.
The commission met on March 3 and issued a preliminarily determination that Kelly should be suspended from office.
“Patrick Kelly’s continued administration of, or conduct in the performance of the duties of, the Office of Sheriff of Athens County, Ohio, pending disposition of the criminal charges against him, would adversely affect the functioning of that office, and would adversely affect the rights and interests of the public, because he is legally responsible for administering the statutory funds, and performing the statutory duties, he is charged with criminally misusing," the commission reported.
Kelly said earlier this week that he had decided not to fight the suspension.
On Thursday, Athens County Commissioners voted unanimously to appoint retired Lt. Rodney Smith as Interim Acting Sheriff.
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