Pike County sues ex-sheriff, seeks repayment of salary, benefits

Posted at 3:35 PM, Aug 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-23 15:35:10-04

WAVERLY, Ohio (AP) — A former Ohio county sheriff who is now serving a state prison sentence for theft in office is being sued by county officials over salary and benefits they say he improperly collected.

Pike County claims Charlie Reader should repay more than $128,000 he collected while suspended from his job. It’s not known if Reader has retained an attorney to represent him in the litigation.

Reader, 47, was sentenced in March to a three-year term. He had risen to prominence for the investigation of the execution-style slayings of eight members of the Rhoden family in April 2016 in the rural county. One man pleaded guilty in that case in March, while charges are still pending against the man’s brother and parents.

Reader eventually was accused of taking loans from sheriff’s office employees and a vendor and stealing more than $14,000 in seized drug money from evidence envelopes to fund his gambling habit. He later returned most of the money to the evidence envelopes, authorities have said.

Reader agreed to be suspended as sheriff in July 2019, shortly after he was indicted on 18 counts that included racketeering. He eventually pleaded guilty in September 2020 to two counts of theft in office, one count of tampering with evidence and one count of conflict of interest.