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Tue, Sep 30, 2014 05:48 AM
Issue of September 24, 2014
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Harrison County Sheriff's deputies go over warrants in preparation for Operation Deadbeat and Delinquent Sunday night. Photo by Ross Schulz

Operation DAD rounds up delinquent child supporters


June 18, 2014 | 10:15 AM

It turned out to be a not-so-great Father's Day for a number of people in Harrison County as the Harrison County Prosecutor's Office and Harrison County Sheriff's Dept. executed Operation Deadbeat and Delinquent (DAD) Sunday night and early Monday morning.

In a multi-county, multi-state round-up, the prosecutor's office signed 55 felony arrest warrants for parents alleged to be delinquent on child support.

"A lot of these guys said you're going to have to put me in prison to make me pay a dime," Prosecutor J. Otto Schalk said to the officers gathered at the sheriff's department before the operation began late Sunday night. "So, let's make that dream a reality."

The amount of money owed to children in Harrison County from the 55 warrants totaled nearly $900,000.

Delinquent payments ranged from $2,500 to up to $59,000 per person.

"There's considerable amounts out there," Schalk said.

And while it was nicknamed Operation DAD, the round-up also included a number of mothers who are allegedly delinquent on payments.

"It's appropriate on Father's Day for Operation DAD to go into effect," Schalk said. "I can't think of any better time for it to go into effect."

More than 20 of the alleged offenders were arrested Sunday night/Monday morning, with more coming in throughout the day Monday. Schalk said he expected to have all of them in custody by the end of the week.

The operation began late Sunday night with Harrison County Sheriff's Dept. Capt. Brad Shepard dividing sheriff's deputies into teams and passing out warrants to go find the delinquent offenders. Within an hour, the department had brought in 10 targeted individuals. The first, from Clark County, was brought in at about 10 p.m. Many of the targets were out-of-county or out-of-state, so it was a multi-county, multi-state coordinated operation.

"This is important to us, important to the kids," Schalk said. "I certainly think it's worth all the resources and time we've put into this."

Schalk said his office began working on the project months ago and that he could certainly see similar operations in the future.

Those arrested during the operation include Keith Armistead, William Lee, Marks Reas, Kalin Rhoads and Steven Smith, all of Corydon; Timothy Beanblossom of Laconia, William Cash and Maria Spear, both of Leavenworth; Gregory Coats, Twyla Knight and Jacky Tsiaourus, all of New Albany; Norman Davis and Joshua Kepley, both of New Salisbury; Jesse Farnsley of Lanesville; Troy Gaines of Marengo; Heather Kemp of Clarksville; Robert Ladd of Mauckport; Johnny Mathes of Depauw; Angela Rainbolt of Jeffersonville; Jason Reagan of English; Anthony Thompson of New Middletown; Christopher Tuell of Mitchell; Gary Wynn of Indianapolis; and Dawn Strohrigl of Lexington, Tenn.

Twitter: @rossschulz

  1. print email
    June 19, 2014 | 09:37 AM

    I'm glad there's finally a prosecutor in this county willing to do something about non-support. My mom went my whole life with no support from the office. There was always an excuse from them. Now she's told it's too late to collect anything because it's been too long. It wasn't from the lack of her trying. $40,000 in arrears and she didn't get a dime.

  2. print email
    June 19, 2014 | 01:33 PM

    Kudos to the Democrat for printing the names of the deadbeats and the prosecutor for going after them.

  3. print email
    about time
    June 19, 2014 | 01:48 PM

    Its about time something was done to these men and women. Now if the Prosecutors office could just do something about the cases that has to be handled by a Special Prosecutor and Judge. We have been waiting about 3 years and still nothing is being done. These people need to go to jail as well or put on a chain gang and made to work to pay the state back for having to take care of these children. These children still have to eat, have clothes, shelter, activities, etc. just because the parents don't want to work does not make the child's needs go away!!!!

    lynne
  4. print email
    June 19, 2014 | 02:16 PM

    Cases handled by a special prosecutor (or special judge) are outside the control of the county prosecutor (or the county judge).

  5. print email
    I love it!
    June 19, 2014 | 02:58 PM

    Awesome job by the prosecutors and by the Sheriff's Dept. I fought for years trying to get my husband to pay support. I suspect this roundup would have gotten his attention.

  6. print email
    Way to go
    June 19, 2014 | 05:00 PM

    Way to go, Otto! It is about time somebody addressed this. Keep up the good work!

    Margo
  7. print email
    operation "dad"
    June 19, 2014 | 05:36 PM

    PRAISE GOD!!!!!!!!! My ex husband was the second one listed!!!!!!! Ive been raising our kids well MY kids for 9 years without so much as a penny from him!!!!!! Glad to see hes where he belongs!!!!!!!

    valerie lee
  8. print email
    dead beat dads
    June 19, 2014 | 08:57 PM

    Thank you for helping us out, doesnt do any good to issue citations (if) the judge lets them off. Contempt has too many exceptions

    valerie vanwinkle
  9. print email
    Excited
    June 20, 2014 | 09:10 AM

    I have lived in Harrison County my entire life. I cannot remember anything like this happening before. I was so excited to see this! This is exactly what we needed. I hope this roundup forces these deadbeats to start paying. Great job to all involved.

  10. print email
    June 20, 2014 | 09:56 AM

    It's not like these people were being ignored. They were already being pursued through the normal (civil court) child support process. They still weren't paying up. These are criminal charges, an escalation of sorts.

  11. print email
    June 20, 2014 | 01:23 PM

    … Why wait months when people owed child support? To get yourself on tv? ...

  12. print email
    not all dads are deadbeats.
    June 20, 2014 | 03:08 PM

    This is good,and bad. Sometimes the father truly is doing the best he can. And sometimes you fall behind. My husband got diagnosed with stage two colon cancer and spent 4 months in the hospital, even working now,and paying his weekly, he is 2500 behind. He is no deadbeat, but is still being threatened with jail time. Jail puts a halt on the child support. so how exactly is jail helping?

    slm
  13. print email
    support
    June 20, 2014 | 03:37 PM

    Since its been 3 years and the special prosecutor isn't doing anything, who can we call or complain too. I have called the Special prosecutor many times and he says he will get back to me but doesn't and usually doesn't return phone calls either. I think its wonderful that these deadbeats care in jail. maybe they will be able to cough up some money for their kids in order to get their freedom back. Great job officers!!!. I cant say Great Job Otto, because he is one of the public defenders ther help get the dead beat i'm dealing with off with no time or consequences!!!


    lynne
  14. print email
    print names in the paper
    June 20, 2014 | 03:43 PM

    In Louisville, once a year, the Courier Journal prints a list of all the deadbeat parents and the amounts they owe. If you know where one of the offenders lives, then you can call the police and let them know and the offender will be picked up and help in jail until they go before the judge. Kentucky has regained millions from doing this. why doesn't Harrison county do this as well???

    lynne
  15. print email
    Misandry at work
    June 20, 2014 | 09:13 PM

    Before some of you celebrate, know that I could have been put on that list of deadbeats and because I paid my child support and I am still steaming about consistently paying my child support money even before the court ordered me to begin payments, only for me to be treated like a "deadbeat dad" who doesn't care about kids.

    Do you know how this happened? Because of a glitch in the system with two different ISET numbers causing the payments to go on an ISET number that the state wasn't expecting payments on.

    This was beyond my control since this happened within the computers and records of the Child Support Bureau and the clerk's office. All I could do was make my payments in cash to the clerk's office in the courthouse and yet it didn't show up in the system.

    The state sends out these intimidating letters to men about how they could lose their vehicle, passport, tax refund, and other things if they don't pay child support. I got a pile of receipts from the clerk's office from paying child support reliably and yet I still got my state tax refund intercepted by the Child Support Bureau and accused of being delinquent.

    I know what it's like to be the victim of prejudice now. Too many of you people get swept away in your cultural attitudes and don't consider the larger picture, you can be a guy who reliably makes child support payments and still treated as a deadbeat dad. The prosecutor's office finally cleared up the matter by performing an audit and I finally got the situation resolved.

    But the Child Support Bureau's first reaction was to assume that I gate kids and didn't want to pay Child support.

  16. print email
    June 23, 2014 | 07:47 AM

    This is a good thing but lets take it one step farther. Lets hold the recipients of this support money responsible to making sure it is used on the children. There are a lot more dads out there paying their support on time than there is dead beats, only to see the support money wasted and not used how it is supposed to be. Who am I kidding? You will never see that happen! You get a lot tv time and newspaper articles arresting dead beat dads than you do bringing mom in and making her accountable.

  17. print email
    June 23, 2014 | 09:42 AM

    Contact the prosecutor's office Not the child support office, the actual main prosecutor's office) to see what options you might have. Even if they're not the prosecutor, they might still be able to help.

  18. print email
    June 24, 2014 | 11:26 AM

    SLM and Misandry @ work, you guys are right on the money. not everyone that doesn't pay CS is a deadbeat.

    And another thing, some of these ex-spouses need to check themselves, I bet over half on that list half ex-spouses who don't even work but would be the first to complain if they didn't get "their" check from Govt or someone else .after all it's their money.

  19. print email
    Operation DAD. What about MOM?
    June 26, 2014 | 01:08 PM

    I totally understand holding people accountable who don't even try. Yet there are some who do struggle and have had some calamities in life as you have read. Some have been ill, some laid off work, some lost everything from a divorce and struggle to start over.

    One thing about the Operation that I don't like is the smell of prejudices. Operation DAD? Really? Sounds good. Might even help the prosecutor gather female votes for the upcoming election. So why did it point to the male and nothing equal to the female gender? Are all deadbeats males? ...

    … He was the youngest prosecutor to be voted in as a prosecutor in Indiana as I recall … Study the charges, study the public record police reports. I hope the people wake up next election as the how this prosecutor really is to the citizens of Harrison County. I used to vote for people like him without a doubt but not anymore. I study the facts, no matter the party. ...

    Chrissy
  20. print email
    Discrimination
    June 26, 2014 | 01:28 PM

    This prosecutor... words are "It's appropriate on Father's Day for Operation DAD to go into effect," Schalk said. "I can't think of any better time for it to go into effect."

    Your kidding me?

    Sounds like he's trying to impress the women to me.

    Jerri
  21. print email
    June 27, 2014 | 09:02 AM

    I'm wondering if Chrissy or Jerri actually read the story, or just the headline. It clearly states that females were arrested and surely there were far more males arrested than female so why not go with "DAD"?

    Making something out of nothing
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