Columbiana County assistant prosecutor facing campaign violation charges

Local News

The charges came after allegations of violations of Ohio's Little Hatch Act

LISBON, Ohio (WKBN) – Assistant County Prosecutor John Gamble, who’s running for the county prosecutor’s seat in November, is facing charges related to campaign violations.

The misdemeanor charges of complicity came after allegations of violations of Ohio’s Little Hatch Act due to classified police officers from East Liverpool appearing on Gamble’s campaign Facebook page.

Court documents detail that Gamble appeared on the courthouse steps with police officers from several departments with a caption reading: “Over 500 years of law enforcement experience standing with John Gamble. They have his back in the election because he’s had their backs for the last 30 years.”

A spokesman for Attorney General David Yost said they warned Gamble about the issue before charges were filed.

“We sent a cease-and-desist letter explaining the law to Mr. Gamble, offering him an opportunity to comply without charges. His continued non-compliance left no choice but to seek enforcement of the law requiring civil service employees to be apolitical — nowhere more important than in law enforcement.”

Gamble, a Democrat, was chosen to replace Robert Herron on the November ballot against Republican challenger Vito Abruzzino.

Gamble sent WKBN a written statement claiming what he and the officers did is protected under the First Amendment and not illegal.

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