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Attorney expects former Trussville fire chief to be found not guilty

From The Trussville Tribune staff reports

TRUSSVILLE –Former Trussville Fire Chief Russell Ledbetter faces a preliminary hearing set for May 15 at 10 a.m. before Judge William A. “Tony” Bell.

Ledbetter was arrested on state ethics and theft charges on April 9 and booked into the Jefferson County Jail. He has been out of jail after posting a $90,000 bond.

In a statement to The Trussville Tribune, William Clark, the attorney representing Ledbetter said he expects a not guilty verdict in the case.

“Russell Ledbetter has been a dedicated public servant for many years,” Clark said in the statement. “We are very disappointed that criminal charges have been brought, but do not believe that he has committed any criminal offense.  We fully expect that the final outcome will be that he will be found not guilty of all charges.”

Related Story: State agents conduct operation at Ledbetter residence

Related Story: Ledbetter placed on administrative leave

Related Story: Fire chief Russell Ledbetter submits resignation

Related Story: Trussville forwards investigation to ABI

The arrest came after an investigation by the Alabama Bureau of Investigation.  Ledbetter is charged with two counts of first degree auto theft and sale, 3 counts of ethics violations, and one count of an overweight vehicle.

Ledbetter had been placed on paid administrative leave by the city council on September 27, 2016 and information was turned over to the state ethics commission. After the ethics commission allowed the time allocated for charges to expire, the ABI picked up the case at the urging of the current city administration.

Ledbetter resigned his position of fire chief on Novermber 3 of 2016.

 

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