When I first heard about this sixth charge from the Butler County Sheriff’s Department, as they have been investigating Roger Reynolds as the auditor for several accusations of corruption, I thought it was ridiculous before. But now, it had become just as much of a kangaroo court as the January 6th Commission for which Liz Cheney was leading in an attempt to keep President Trump off the 2024 presidential ticket. Roger Reynolds has been an excellent auditor in Butler County for a long time, and he has a political rival in Sheriff Jones who wants to show him how much political power he has, and the two have been at it for well over a year now. And instead of fighting in a parking lot somewhere, this is how modern bullies fight; they use the legal system as a weapon against their political opponents. I watched in bewilderment how a grown man like Sherrif Jones could have such a press conference announcing so much of nothing as he did with this latest stack of accusations against Roger, declaring that this latest one on the pile was some kind of big crime of corruption in line with the recent case of P.G. Sittenfeld from Cincinnati who was just found guilty of similar charges. In Roger’s case, he is nothing like the dirty politicians like P.G. Sittenfeld or the very dirty politics that occurred in the FirstEnergy case in Columbus, which isn’t about money at all. The FirstEnergy controversy is an attack by the political left against the Ohio energy grid and using political infighting among Republicans to hide it. When you see cases like this, where a Sheriff is so personally involved in finding anything to knock off a political rival within the Republican Party, you can tell easily that it’s not a case about the crime but about power and control over other people.
I know the characters involved in the new indictment, such as Jenni Logan, the treasurer from Lakota schools. She stated she thought Roger Reynolds was asking Lakota to invest money owed back to the District into a golf academy at Four Bridges. Ben Dibble, who was president of the school board around that time in 2017, was involved as well, according to the liberal activist from Fox 19, Jennifer Edwards Baker, who would love to erode away the very good Republican Party of Butler County any way possible. She’s been at it for a while, and area Republicans have been targeted for anything resembling impropriety. Of course, that’s tough because many of the modern Republicans are not like they were back in the Michael Fox days or when Bob Shelley was a trustee in Liberty Township. Lakota has their own problems, and if there was some incidental conversation about a golf academy from money coming back out of the auditor’s office, which Roger Reynolds represents, it was likely out of polite conversation. I’ve seen the lunch circuit Jenni Logan has been a part of for a long time, and I understand how talk can be made. For a while, especially before Covid, almost everywhere I went to lunch, I saw Jenni Logan and Matt Miller, the Lakota superintendent, there talking with other people. I can easily see in such meetings how talk about how money should be spent would occur. Is that legal or illegal? Well, suppose we start picking pepper out of fly droppings like this over legal issues meant to show the sheriff’s department’s power over things people say and go from there. In that case, we will likely create a business and political environment where nobody can talk to anybody about anything anywhere. Knowing the characters involved in this latest indictment, it didn’t change a thing about my opinion about Roger Reynolds. I will still happily vote for him and support him in the upcoming elections. I care more about what good of a job he has done for my community than what kind of political enemies he has made along the way. And after that press conference by Jones, I could only conclude that he has now become Butler County’s own version of Liz Cheney, who hates President Trump so much that she would attempt to bend the law and waste endless amounts of money in investigations just to keep him out of the political theater.
The level of ridiculousness really overflowed when Sheriff Jones tried to bring up Thomas Hall, who is a current State Rep running for the 46th District, which now includes Liberty Township. Jones indicated he was continuing to investigate Thomas Hall for conflicts of interest even though a recent Keith Faber report from way back in 2018 and 2019 failed to show anything wrong, even under a microscope of a state audit generated based on what people “say.” Those old-style political hits aren’t going to work in this new world where people have seen so much done against President Trump. The public is much more savvy about these things than they used to be. In reaction to Sheriff Jones indicating he was going to continue investigating Thomas Hall, whom Jones is supporting a rival to run against Hall in the primary on August 2nd, Hall simply called Jones a “bully.” Hall said specifically to the Journal News, “this whole thing is ridiculous, for the sheriff to want an investigation I think is wrong, using his office for political motives when there’s an election 19 days from today. (when the statement was made and referring to the August 2nd primary race) The sheriff is a bully and will continue to do what he wants until people stand up to him.” That’s one of the reasons I’m supporting Thomas Hall; he’s a good, sharp young man who can handle the heat in the kitchen and make a wonderful meal with it. And the sheriff doesn’t like him because he won’t kiss the ring and allow Jones to be a token kingmaker.
I’ve talked to Roger Reynolds, and I know why Jones doesn’t like him, at least from Roger’s perspective. Roger runs a great auditor’s office in Butler County. People say all kinds of things, and if the roles were reversed, Sheriff Jones could easily find himself on an indictment list based on “what people say.” People could say that Jones is a bully because he wants to put the fear of the law into local trustees who vote on budgets from which his family and friends benefit. Jones has family and friends employed all over Butler County, and he doesn’t like it when they get laid off for not showing up for work. I know Roger pushed for more transparency on how money gets shown to the public, and Jones wasn’t a fan. And from there, their relationship, which had been a good one, fell apart. Those things happen; I see it as a human resource issue of county employees fighting over power and prestige. But when that hatred escalates to the level where a sheriff is willing to abuse his power to the extent he has with Roger Reynolds and Thomas Hall, purely over political power within the Republican Party, then it becomes a big problem. What we really have is a Butler County version of Liz Chaney. This name used to have significant meaning in the Republican Party until she was revealed to be a liberal hack by the Trump administration. And the phony hearings happening now in Washington D.C. are the same phony hearings that have been thrown at Roger Reynolds because he has pushed for more transparency and accountability for public officials. Not less. And for all the reasons that the political establishment hates Trump, they hate people like Roger Reynolds and Thomas Hall. And when it comes time to vote for them, I will happily pick Roger and Thomas every time over the opinions of Sheriff Jones.