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Nowata County Sheriff blames competing campaign for allegations after embezzlement charges

Posted at 9:23 PM, Oct 17, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-17 23:29:56-04

NOWATA, Okla. -- Nowata County Sheriff Kenny Freeman was arrested for felony embezzlement on Wednesday.

Court documents show he took $6,000 worth of donated school supplies meant for local districts, but the sheriff told 2 Works for You that wasn't the case.

"I have not been able to give them to the schools. The lunch pails I gave away at a free fair. There was only 90-some lunch pails. There wasn't enough for all three schools," Freeman said.

Freeman has also been accused of using the fair booth as a campaign table. He said it was strictly for the kids' enjoyment.

The sheriff also said he asked commissioners weeks ago to approve a donation and was waiting for them to reach a resolution. Now he blames his competitor's campaign for filing a complaint with the DA's office.

"Since day one, since the election started, there's been pressure for me to get out of this office," Freeman said.

His running mate Terry Sue Barnett said she has no knowledge of this, and doesn't plan to speak against Freeman in the weeks ahead. However, Barnett does hope to see changes following this election.

"If you've been aware of everything that's gone on since Sheriff Freeman has been in office... there's been a lot of problems with the personnel," she said.

After bonding out, Freeman will remain acting sheriff.

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