Road rage charges dropped against Carlisle mayor

FRANKLIN — Road rage charges against Carlisle Mayor Tim Humphries were dismissed Monday, Jan. 25, after a police officer scheduled to testify failed to show up to Franklin Municipal Court.

Humphries, 41, was accused getting out of his car and threatening an 18-year-old man with a souvenir Cincinnati Reds baseball bat, because the teen was driving too closely behind him. The mayor faced a fifth-degree felony charge of obstructing official business and misdemeanor charges of aggravated menacing and prohibition against parking on highways as a result of the Dec. 1 incident.

But all of those charges were dropped Monday when no one from the Carlisle Police Department showed up for the 8:30 a.m. preliminary hearing and pretrial conference.

The mayor’s attorney, Jon Paul Rion, called the dismissal “a complete vindication of Humphries.”

“The fact that no officers from Carlisle appeared is an indication that they were not willing to subject their case to a fierce cross-examination,” Rion said. “The truth of our belief has come out through their silence.”

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Carlisle Police Chief Tim Boggess said the officer slated to appear in court Monday got confused regarding the date, as Franklin court is typically held on Tuesdays and Fridays.

Boggess said he’s not sure why all of the charges were dismissed, adding he would consult with the prosecutor’s office on next steps.

Rion has argued for weeks that Humphries’ prosecution was part of a “politically-based scheme.” He said there still have been no charges brought against the mayor for alleged inappropriate materials on his city-owned computer, which was seized Nov. 5 and shipped to the FBI for analysis.

Someone is “trying to use the court system in an attempt to intimidate a good mayor,” Rion said. “Whoever is behind this, a message is being sent by the dismissals...that their attempts to corrupt the system will eternally fail.”

Boggess dismissed Rion’s conspiracy theory flat out, saying his department is “in no way doing such a thing.”

Humphries “knew what he did, and we filed charges that the prosecutor had to accept,” Boggess said. “The fact remains that he stopped in the middle of the road, exited his vehicle and went back toward the subject who was behind him with a weapon.”

Humphries, who was elected mayor in 2007, said now that these charges are behind him, his bid in the May primary election for Warren County Commission is still on the table.

Contact this reporter at (513) 705-2871 or rgauthier@coxohio.com.

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