Candidates face off at Sandusky County sheriff's debate

FREMONT (13abc Action News) - Three candidates faced off at the Sandusky County sheriff's debate on Thursday night.

Some thought it would be fireworks during the debate while suspended Sandusky County Sheriff Kyle Overmyer took on Chris Hilton and James Consolo.It was professional and stayed on track during the duration of the event.

Out the gate, moderator David Yonke asked a question about the heroine epidemic in Sandusky County and how each candidate plans on tackling it.

"What we need to do is cooperation, communication and sharing resources," said Hilton.

"What we have right now is not efficient for the county with the enormous amount of drugs coming into Sandusky County," said Overmyer.

Overmyer has been the sheriff for the past eight years. He said grant money is needed to grow a task force.

All three candidates agree heroin use has gotten out of control in their area and something needs to be done immediately. They have an idea for a resolution.

"Get this task force up and running and get them going full staff. "Find out what they need and let's give it to them," said Consolo.

It didn't take too long for the question to come up regarding the last two months Overmyer has been facing.

Yonke said, "In August, the grand jury filed 43 criminal charges against you including 38 felonies you've pleaded not guilty to all counts.

Overmyer responded with, "Well, with all due respect, I can't answer very a whole lot. Innocent to proven guilty."

Overmyer couldn't fully share the intricacies of the case behind the podium, so on a one-on-one with 13abc reporter Brigette Burnett he told her his thoughts about facing criminal charges while running for sheriff.

"You just stay calm, cool, and collective. It's just like anything else, you know who you are and what kind of person you are and you stand tall and be proud," said Overmyer. "If I'm not the sheriff, then I go on and I look for something else."

"Can they run with someone that is on trial? asked 13abc's Burnett. Consolo said "No. No, the sheriff's office needs stability."

"I want to keep it positive because I truly believe people might want the fire works, but they actually want to hear what you got to say," said Hilton.

"In my eyes Chris is the guy it sounds like tonight for me," said voter Jamey Halbison.

A productive debate is what some are calling it. Some came with a question and left with an answer.

Sandra Wise said, "even though they're independent candidates I still want to hear and make my choice of all three and I've made my choice from listening to this."

All candidates closed with why residents in Sandusky County should vote for them on election day.