Huntington County Commissioner Tom Wall says he will continue to serve in that office and continue his campaign for re-election despite facing seven misdemeanor battery charges, allegations he says are "untrue."
"I am going to fight to win this election," Wall says.
The Huntington County businessman says his campaign will focus on his contributions to the community during his four years as commissioner and in other areas, even though many of the questions he's asked will likely focus on the allegations of battery.
A Huntington County grand jury, called by Special Prosecutor D.J. Sigler of Whitley County, issued the charges on Sept. 28.
The grand jury based its findings on complaints filed by two women, Sigler said.
Because the charges are all misdemeanors, a conviction would not prevent Wall from holding or seeking an elected office.
"I have done nothing wrong," Wall says. "I'm going to fight for my innocence."
Wall says the local prosecutor and judges, who are his fellow elected officials, followed procedure by appointing out-of-county officials to deal with the case.
"They did the right thing by passing it on," he says. "I am not above the law."
Wells County Judge Kenton Kiracofe, who will hear the case, has set the next court date for Nov. 14 - after the Nov. 6 election. Wall says he had no say in the judge's timing.
"That is the schedule of the courts," he says. "We have no control over the schedule of the courts."
Wall says he will continue to serve as a commissioner.
"These allegations have been just devastating for my family and my friends," he says. "And they are allegations. They are unproven."
Wall says that he didn't know who had made the allegations until after the grand jury made its findings. He says he has been advised by his attorney not to respond to the allegations prior to the court proceedings.
"I will prove my innocence when we get our day in court," Wall says. "My integrity, my honor, my family values didn't just start a week ago."
Wall, a Republican, is running against Democrat Ken Zuk in the general election.