Butler County GOP chair calls for Retherford's resignation

Wes Retherford charged with OVI
Posted at 5:39 PM, Mar 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-16 18:48:07-04

FAIRFIELD TOWNSHIP, Ohio -- The chair of the Butler County Republican Party said state Rep. Wes Retherford should resign.

Retherford was taking the week off after he was arrested early Sunday morning at a McDonald's drive-thru. But GOP leaders want more from the fellow Republican.

"I have worked very hard on our perception of who we are and the integrity that we represent. And our constituents and office holders for this county and I have worked very hard at that, to protect that, and to make sure that we make good decisions, and that's why this hits so close to home," Todd Hall, the chair of the Butler County GOP, said.

Retherford was found passed out behind the wheel of a truck and had a loaded pistol in the center armrest, deputies wrote in an incident report. He was charged with improper handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle while intoxicated and OVI.

Hall is calling for Retherford's resignation.

"At this point, I am absolutely asking for state Rep. Wes Retherford's full written resignation to myself, Todd Hall, the chairman of the Butler County Republican Party," he said.

Several residents who spoke to a reporter Thursday agreed the charges are very serious for an elected official to try to continue on with.

"With the gun and stuff, I think he should definitely resign," Arthur Jones said. "He's a politician, he shouldn't be getting drunk at the wheel and stuff like that, and have a gun -- definitely not."

Hall said Retherford needs to look inward.

"There's no way anybody can serve anyone with this amount of problems going on in their personal life," he said.

Retherford released the following statement Wednesday:

"Due to present circumstances, I regretfully will be absent from session and all committee hearings in the Ohio House of Representatives for the remainder of the week. Out of respect for my family, I humbly ask for space and privacy as we move forward on this personal matter."

He's due back in court next week.