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  • Writer's pictureBill Raines

Oolitic Town Employee threatens Oolitic Town Marshal in October following arrest of another employee

OOLITIC - JANUARY 9, 2024 - Warning the video footage has language that may be objectionable to some, viewer discretion is advised.


The Lawrence County Zephyr has obtained body camera footage of Oolitic Town Employee Wesley Tipton threatening Oolitic Town Marshal James Harrington on October 30, 2023.


Tipton's threats came after another Oolitic town employee Michael Collins , East Oolitic, was arrested the same night on an unrelated matter.


Photo: On October 30, 2023 several police officers from the Oolitic Town Marshal's Office, Indiana State Police and Lawrence County Sheriff's Department responded to Oolitic Town Hall on October 30th after Oolitic Town Marshal Harrington was threatened by a town employee


Body camera footage shows Tipton making the threats against Harrington stating that Tipton was not afraid of going to jail.


Marshal Harrington warned Tipton about being arrested, however Tipton told him to meet him at the town hall.


Video: Ooltiic Town employee Wes Tipton calls Town Marshal Harrington making threats


In the video the Oolitic Town Marshal arrives at the town hall and Harrington tells Tipton he was under arrest and Tipton was tasered once Harrington arrived at town hall and an altercation began between the two.


Police officers gave Tipton medical care until the arrival of medical personnel from the Oolitic Volunteer Fire Department and IU Lifeline Ambulance Service.


Tipton was transported by IU Lifeline ambulance to IU Health Hospital Bedford for treatment. Officer Harrington suffered injuries to his leg and sought additional medical treatment.



Video: Ooltic Town employee make threats against Ooliic Town Marshal James Harrington


At this time there have been no criminal charges filed by the Lawrence County Prosecutors office on Tipton as the case is being reviewed.


This week on Monday afternoon three town council members voted to place Marshal James Harrington on leave pending an investigation after the town council members maintain he disobeyed a direct order.


Town council members Brenda Corey, Johny "Bob" Dillion, and Jon Broglin voted in favor of placing Harrington on leave.


Oolitic town council member Steve Kerr voted against, and there remains a vacant seat on the town council following the resignation of Tangie Jenkins.


Photo: A resident expresses their displeasure after the Oolitic Town Council would not allow public comments during a Special Meeting on Monday


The Oolitic Town Council voted to end the K-9 program in a December meeting.



On January 2, 2024, Marshal Harrington called town council member Steve Kerr to seek permission to use his K-9 at a traffic stop. The Marshal and Lawrence County deputies seen known suspected drug dealers and users at Casey's General Store in Oolitic.


The Ooltic Town Council is meeting in Executive session at the Oolitic Town Hall today at 5:00 pm.


Harrington maintains that the workplace got hostile after expressing concerns that town employees and council member was consuming alcoholic beverages while on Oolitic town business and using town equipment.


There was no public intoxication or OWI charges on record for Oolitic Town employees as no arrests were made.


" My mistake was not making an arrest," said Harrington in a previous interview with the Lawrence County Zephyr.


All other town employees who was mentioned in this story are still employed by the town.


The Oolitic Town Council has not commented on the situation under the advice of legal counsel attorney Greg Pittman.


The Lawrence County Zephyr will continue to monitor developments in this news story.


For breaking news and information go to lczephyr.org or like/follow the Lawrence County Zephyr Facebook page.


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1 Comment


Pamela Underwood
Jan 10

First of all, I know James Harrington, and he is all business, that is how policemen should be. I cannot believe the town council would let anyone speak like Tipton. You really want him representing your town? He should absolutely be in jail! I would be ashamed if I were a town council person!

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