Dear Mr. Kraus,
RE: Response to your message to “Fellow Elected Officials” (below):
Fellow Elected Officials,
While I was not copied on the attachments, I believe we should leave it up to the sheriff, prosecutor, and the judge who will decide the matter when and if it goes to court. Anything involving Federal Funding will be determined by the Federal Government, not County Officials outside of the department seeking said funding. All that these accusations from people do is distract us from our business that we are constitutionally bound to do. I am tired of all the bulls**t accusations people make and expect any and all county officials to get involved. I am a County Surveyor and this is none of my business. Beside that, (and I am not trying to insult anyone) most of us do not have the education or training to make a determination on whether or not a law has been broken that will affect Federal Funding.
Dennis A. Kraus Jr.
Dearborn County Surveyor
I would like to apologize for not copying you to the email regarding my concerns about Aaron Negangard’s conduct and how it has the potential to jeopardize future federal funding and I wanted to take an opportunity to further explain the logic behind my statements.
You are correct in stating that federal funding is determined by the federal government, but by no means are federal grants guaranteed. Federal grants are available through a form of application process and are subject to stipulations and limitations. If the appropriate federal agencies that are responsible for appropriating federal grant monies become aware that the grant money may have been used in an unethical or illegal manner, it would certainly jeopardize the ability to renew/receive such grants.
You claim that “most of us do not have the education or training to make a determination on whether or not a law has been broken that will affect federal funding.” If formal education and training were a prerequisite for questioning the conduct and decisions of government officials, then most of us would not be “qualified” to raise questions about universal health care, taxes, federal court decisions, etc… because the majority of us are not doctors, accountants, or lawyers. It appears that your contention is that the general public is not smart enough to comprehend many matters that come before government officials and that the general population lacks the experience and/or education necessary to voice their opinions; which is very offensive to the blue collar workers of the United States as it suggests that the hard working, “below upper class” workers in the United States are some kind of second rate citizens.
As you claim that you are the County Surveyor and none of this is your business, I have to question why you are writing about the situation. As you are the County Surveyor who was not copied to my original email, it should be questioned why someone felt that it was necessary to contact the County Surveyor about the situation. It also should be questioned why the County Surveyor is offering a public statement on a criminal investigation that has nothing to do with the surveyor’s office. I find it very troubling how you claim that the abilities of Dearborn County officials, to properly perform their “constitutionally bound” duties in serving the people of Dearborn County, is somehow hindered by people exercising their constitutionally protected First Amendment Rights to free speech; which was established long before Dearborn County even existed.
I am truly sorry that you are “tired of all the bulls**t accusations people make and expect any and all county officials to get involved.” I find your statement to be both insensitive and condescending. When the public’s safety is compromised, they have the ability to go to local law enforcement and/or the local prosecutor. When the conduct of the prosecutor and law enforcement are in question, it is unclear whom the public has to turn to. I’m sorry that you think that it is “bulls**t” that I told several Dearborn County officials that Prosecutor Negangard did not tell the truth in his denial of my public records request. Mr. Negangard stated, “Pursuant to Indiana Law, Investigatory records are confidential and are not to be disclosed.” Though I do not have the legal education and experience that you personally would require someone to have in order to question a county prosecutor, I do have the ability to read and Indiana Law states that all Investigatory records are subject to release at the discretion of the public agency (provided that they do not contain medical information, trade secrets, educational information, etc… in which case the specific information can be redacted or omitted.) If your comment “bulls**t accusations” refers to my statements regarding the ex parte communication between Judge James D. Humphrey and Aaron Negangard, or someone else in the prosecutor’s office and/or sheriff’s department, I can assure that they are neither “bulls**t” nor “accusations” as Mr. Negangard confirmed that someone shared some of the “confidential” information from the Investigatory record with Judge Humphrey in an ex parte fashion. This conduct disqualifies Judge Humphrey and Aaron Negangard from playing any role in charging and/or prosecuting me.
The question still remains; why are you commenting about a situation that you claim is none of your business while admitting that you do not have the education or training necessary to understand the situation? From a legal perspective, you have no basis for calling the accusations “bulls**t” because it would be impossible for you to have any information refuting the accusations; unless of course Mr. Negangard has leaked information from the Investigatory record to you or someone else. Considering that Mr. Negangard claimed that Indiana Law prohibited the release of Investigatory records because the records are confidential, one may consider it to be “bulls**t” that someone in the prosecutor’s office and/or the sheriff’s department allowed information from the “confidential” Investigatory record to spread all of the way to the office of the Dearborn County Surveyor.
Please feel free to hold county officials like Aaron Negangard responsible for their unethical actions. If you need any further information regarding this matter, please do not hesitate to contact me. Thank you for your time.
Very truly yours,