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Wetzel Sheriff Resigns

October 2, 2012
By IAN HICKS Staff Writer , The Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

NEW MARTINSVILLE - Wetzel County commissioners were expected to meet today to name an interim replacement for former Sheriff James Hoskins, who resigned his office effective Sunday.

Hoskins, who is subject to term limits and was not eligible to run for re-election this year, had been sheriff since 2005. Commissioner Scott Lemley said his temporary replacement will come from within the department, and will serve until the winner of the Nov. 6 election between Democrat John Brookover and Constitution Party candidate Jeffrey Jarrell takes office in January.

According to Lemley, Hoskins left to take another job but did not disclose what company he would be working for in his letter of resignation. Hoskins' resignation comes amid concerns over alleged neglect of some of his administrative duties over the past year, according to Lemley and commission President Donald Mason.

"Some of our vendors weren't being paid in a timely manner," Mason said, noting there was ample money in the department's budget to cover those expenses.

Commissioners said they've already been contacted by collection agencies, and the exact amount of money the county owes may not be known until all the unpaid vendors turn those debts in for collection. Lemley said, however, that he's sure the figure is "in the thousands."

"There's really no excuse for it," said Lemley, who defeated Hoskins by 58 votes in the Democratic primary for county assessor and is running unopposed in the general election.

Mason said the commission will work closely with whomever is named interim sheriff to make sure all the county's debts are satisfied.

Hoskins could not be reached for comment at press time.

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