BENTON, Ark. (KTHV)- Among the charges embattled former Saline County Sheriff Bruce Pennington is facing includes one felony count of abuse of public trust, stemming from a free gift Pennington received from a Benton business owner.
"It was just a situation of thank you for helping us and so at some point later we just did something for a community official," says Scott McElroy, whose brother and business partner Glen gave Pennington more than a thousand dollars worth of granite countertops for free after Pennington allegedly cleared him of community service hours following a speeding ticket. "Never one time was there any mention at all of 'Ok Glenn I've taken care of your community service and I need these granite countertops.'"
In an affidavit released Friday, Pennington admitted to investigators the letter he sent stating Glen McElroy had completed the community service was false. When we attempted to interview the sheriff at his home Friday afternoon, he refused to comment.
Meanwhile, the McElroys say they're cooperating with state police on the investigation even though they feel their gift to the sheriff and the charges that followed are being blown out of proportion. "I feel bad for the sheriff," McElroy added. "He'll have his day in court like everybody."