Hawkins commission names replacement for constable facing felony charges

Jeff Bobo • Updated Jul 5, 2019 at 10:03 AM

ROGERSVILLE — Former Constable Ryan Christian was chosen by the Hawkins County Commission last week to return to that position, despite the attempts of a second nominee to quash rumors of a criminal record.

Christian was approved by a vote of 19-1 to take over the District 1 constable position, which was left vacant by the resignation of Bill Creasy following his indictment on felony charges. District 1 covers far eastern Hawkins County including Mount Carmel and Allandale.

This past February, Creasy was indicted on felony charges of official misconduct and official oppression for allegedly conducting a traffic stop last August and detaining a man before officially taking office on Sept. 1. 

A link in the online version of this article (www.timesnews.net) contains more information about the charges filed against Creasy.

There were two nominees for the position during the June 24 county commission meeting: Christian, who was nominated by District 1 Commissioners Syble Vaughan-Trent and Raymond Jessee; and Mount Carmel Alderman Jim Gilliam, who was nominated by District 1 Commissioner George Bridwell.

Gilliam presented the commission with a resume which listed 19.5 years on the Ohio State Patrol, seven years on the Fulton County (Ohio) Sheriff’s Office, and experience as a federal security contractor. He is currently employed by the Scott County, Va., school system.

“You’ve got my resume on your desk, and what you see is what you get, plain and simple,” Gilliam told commissioners. “There’s some people going around saying I got a police record. I currently work at the Scott County school system, and I do not have any police record whatsoever. If anybody in here wants to go pull that, they can pull it.”

Gilliam added, “If elected, I’ll do the job the best I can, to the ‘T.’ If I’m not the best qualified, then take the other guy. If he ain’t the best qualified, then take me. I can’t make promises that I can’t back up. The only thing I can tell you is there’s two people around here spreading rumors that I’ve got a police record, and that’s wrong.”

Gilliam noted that he couldn’t have worked in law enforcement or for the school system if he had a criminal record.

“People going around here spreading rumors is not right. And I know why they’re spreading them. But, if that’s the best thing they’ve got to do, let them go for it,” Gilliam said.

The lone vote for Gilliam came from Bridwell.

Christian served as District 1 constable from 2014-18, was the Mount Carmel fire chief for six years, and received the second highest number of votes for the constable position in the 2018 Republican primary.

“I enjoy working with the public,” Christian told the commission. “That’s why I’m seeking another term as constable. I also have a good relationship with the agencies. Never had any complaints.”

Christian’s term expires at the end of August 2022.

There’s also a vacancy on the Board of Education due to the resignation of District 7 member Holly Helton to accept a teaching position at Cherokee High School.

District 7includes Bulls Gap, as well as the St. Clair and Persia communities.

The commission will hold a special called meeting on July 22 at 5:30 p.m. to fill that position. The regular monthly meeting will follow at 6 p.m. 

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