COLUMBUS, Ohio—Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost on Monday asked a Sandusky County court to remove county Prosecutor Tim Braun, who pleaded guilty earlier this month in a sexual misconduct case involving two female staffers in his office.
As part of a plea deal, Braun agreed to resign by June 30, 2020 and not seek re-election next fall. But he has resisted calls by Gov. Mike DeWine, the Fremont City Council, and the Sandusky County Republican Party to step down immediately.
In a legal complaint filed with the Sandusky County Common Pleas Court, Yost argued that Braun is guilty of misconduct in office because he “engaged in a pattern of physical and psychological abuse, fear and intimidation of female subordinates for his own personal, prurient interests.”
Five women who either work or worked in the prosecutor’s office have accused Braun of sexual misconduct.
Braun, they said, gave inappropriate backrubs, made lewd comments about employees’ bodies and inquired about their sex lives, and inappropriately touched one employee’s breast. They said Braun made threats about putting a “dull blade to a throat” or imprisoning anyone who crossed him, according to Yost’s complaint.
When one employee challenged his misconduct, and another resigned, Braun opened a “dubious” investigation about purportedly missing personnel records, allowing him to obtain three female employees’ private cell-phone records, according to the complaint.
“Timothy Braun’s actions have demonstrated that he cannot and should not be trusted with the power and authority of the Sandusky County Prosecutor or to seek justice on behalf of victims of sexual violence or assault,” the complaint states.
Braun pleaded guilty Dec. 6 to one third-degree misdemeanor count of negligent assault. As part of his plea deal, Braun can work only two more days until he’s forced to leave office in June, though he can continue to draw on his salary of approximately $140,000.
On those days when he does come to work, he must provide 24-hours notice so his victims don’t have to be present.
After Braun declined to leave office immediately, DeWine asked Yost to draw up the complaint seeking his immediate removal.
Published at Mon, 30 Dec 2019 15:30:00 +0000