Security was tight at the Schuyler County Courthouse Thursday afternoon after death threats were made against a northeast Missouri sheriff who is facing five felony charges.
Schuyler County Sheriff Josh Dole of Glenwood went before a judge in a Lancaster courtroom.
As the 30-year-old Dole was getting out of the Clark County patrol car that transported him from Kahoka to Lancaster, deputies put a bulletproof vest on him before escorting him into the Schuyler County Courthouse.
Dole was arrested Wednesday following an investigation by the Missouri State Highway Patrolâ??s Division of Drug and Crime Control.
He faces two felony counts of tampering with a witness and three felony counts of permitting escape.
Adair County Prosecutor Matt Wilson has been appointed special prosecutor in the case.
Court documents state that Dole illegally removed two Schuyler County inmates and took them in a private vehicle to a bar in Knox County.
On another occasion, he is accused of removing an inmate from the jail and taking that inmate in a private vehicle to a bar in Sullivan County.
â??The Probable Cause Statement indicates that on one occasion Sheriff Dole allowed two inmates to be transported by himself and another individual to a bar in another county and without any proper court order or such,â?? said Wilson. â??And, then on another occasion, â?|an inmate was transported by Sheriff Dole to a bar in another county as well."
Dole is also accused of illegally removing two inmates from the Schuyler County Jail on two separate occasions to do personal labor at his residence in Schuyler County.
That reportedly happened between February and May 2014.
The two tampering with a witness charges stem from allegations that Dole instructed personnel under his command to not reveal facts pertaining to this case to investigators.
Following Thursdayâ??s hearing, KTVO spoke to Kirksville attorney Jay Benson, who is part of the firm representing Dole.
â??I just hope people will let the criminal justice system take its course,â?? said Benson. â??Under our Constitution, Sheriff Dole is presumed innocent until he's found guilty by a jury of his peers."
During the bond reduction hearing, Dole's defense attorney requested that the sheriff be released on his own recognizance.
The prosecution opposed that.
Judge Rick Roberts denied the bond reduction request and ordered that Dole remain in custody at the Clark County Jail on $50,000 cash-only bond.
Dole's preliminary hearing is set for 9 a.m. July 21, 2014 in a Schuyler County courtroom.
Schuyler County Chief Deputy Luis Perez is serving as acting sheriff during Dole's absence.
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