May 16, 2014

DeVore Takes Over as Mayor as Cruse Tossed Out

Mayor Kenny DeVore
Embattled Hodgenville Mayor Terry Cruse was removed from office by a 9-0 vote of the city council, after allegations he and City Clerk Madonna Hornback spent thousands of dollars for personal reasons.

The council voted in Kenny DeVore as interim mayor. He will serve until an election in November to determine who the new mayor will be. Anyone interested in running will have until August to declare their intentions.

When asked about the situation before the decision to oust Cruse was made, Hodgenville Police Chief Steven Johnson said he believed the council should have waited until after the criminal case was decided.

He does have a point there. What happens if Cruse is exonerated from wrong-doing, and was removed on the assumption he was guilty?

Cruse and Hornbach were indicted by a grand jury in December, with both being accused of using fuel credit cards issued by the city to make personal purchases. The total between the two that was alleged to have been spent comes to over $30,000.

Part of the hearing with the council were allegations of nepotism, relating to Cruse having his son hired for a job he wasn't qualified for, and that Hornbach's son was also hired by the city. The city of Hodgenville has a nepotism policy in place, which Council member Jim Phelps says was violated by Cruse and Hornbach.

According to Cruse, the hearing to remove him was a political one. He claims all the city council members have agendas.

Cruse is also running for LaRue County Sheriff. The primary election is scheduled to be held on Tuesday.

Whatever follows for Cruse and Hornbach, and whether or not politics eventually came into the picture, some of the decisions that were made were poor ones, and in that regard they have no one to blame but themselves for ending up in the position they are in.

 The pair will face criminal charges in June.

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