Sheriff denies governor’s criminal investigation


TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – Shawnee County Sheriff Brian Hill will not pursue a criminal investigation into Kansas Governor Laura Kelly following a complaint filed by a Republican group earlier this year.

In June, the Republican Governors Association, RGA, asked a local prosecutor and sheriff to investigate the Democratic governor for what he alleged was the criminal use of taxpayer resources.

In a statement Thursday, Todd Stallbaumer, spokesperson for the Shawnee County Sheriff’s Office, confirmed that they would not be acting on the criminal referral from the RGA at this time.

After a preliminary review of this matter, it has been determined that no criminal investigation will take place at this time. However, should additional information come to light, the case will be reviewed by our Investigations Division.

Todd Stallbaumer, Shawnee County Sheriff’s Administrative Division

The RGA filed a criminal referral to Shawnee County District Attorney Michael Kagay and the Sheriff, accusing Kelly of criminally using taxpayer resources to help him in his re-election campaign. Kagay and the sheriff are both Republicans.

The group said the criminal referral stemmed from actions taken by Kelly and his staff earlier this year in May. The RGA ruled that the actions may have violated Kansas public integrity laws, such as KSA 75-2953(a).

According to the group, Kelly’s campaign attempted to have an RGA Kansas 2022 PAC ad removed. Kelly’s campaign sent a letter to TV stations. The group says it received a letter from an attorney that included a memo from Kansas Department of Children and Families Secretary Laura Howard, which has since resulted in an ethics complaint being filed by the RGA.

Kelly’s campaign spokeswoman said the allegations were part of an ethics complaint that was dropped before the referral was filed.

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