Allen County Prosecutor Race Figures To Heat Up: Former Deputy Ready To Throw Hat In Ring

By Jeff Neumeyer

January 13, 2014 Updated Jan 13, 2014 at 5:30 PM EST

ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (21ALIVE) --- Sparks could be flying in the upcoming Allen County prosecutor's race.

A one-time chief deputy prosecutor, who was critical of the agency in the past, is ready to run for the top job in the office.

In 2002, Loomis was the center of controversy when he ran unsuccessfully against Karen Richards for prosecutor.

We've learned he'll be a candidate in the May Republican Primary again, even though he and the party's chairman have a history of not getting along.

Sources tell 21 Alive that Loomis will formally announce his candidacy at an event Tuesday.

In November 2001, he made headlines, claiming his old boss Bob Gevers negligently stopped a grand jury investigation Loomis was spearheading into alleged corruption that involved African American officers in the Fort Wayne Police Department.

Allen County Republican Party Chairman Steve Shine endorsed Richards, and was quoted, saying Loomis had a vendetta against minorities and the multi-cultural community.

Loomis was incensed at the remarks.

" By interjecting in the electoral contest, a mean and baseless allegation that invokes racial and ethnical divisiveness, what a low down, dirty tactic," Loomis told reporters at the time.

" Just another political bomb that's been lodged at me to detract attention from the issues and the qualifications of the candidates that should be a focus of this campaign," Shine responded.

Shine later wrote an editorial, apologizing for his vendetta remark, but Loomis felt he'd been libeled and he filed a defamation of character lawsuit.

The Indiana Court of Appeals eventually dismissed the suit, saying there was insufficient evidence that the comment crossed the line to malice.

We'll see if the next four months produce more fireworks with Loomis back on the ballot.

Richards has held the office for the past 12 years.




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