NESS CITY — Ness County Sheriff Bryan Whipple is back behind bars again, this time at the Ford County Sheriff’s Office.
According to Melissa Underwood, the communications director with the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, “the Ness County Sheriff was arrested on Jan. 29 at the Ness County Sheriff’s Office for a violation of his bond.
“The sheriff had allegedly contacted a person associated with his criminal case so he was arrested and transported to the Ford County Sheriff’s Office.
“That is typical for law enforcement to go to a different county jail. That is why he is being housed in Ford County because the sheriffs are the ones who operate the jail typically in Kansas at the county level.”
Underwood added the Trego County attorney would be prosecuting the case as special counsel at the request of the Ness County attorney.
It had been reported on Dec. 22 by the KBI that Whipple, 47, had been arrested and charged with perjury, making false information, criminal distribution of firearms to a felon and official misconduct.
The KBI had been investigating Whipple regarding the misconduct at the request of Ness County Attorney Kevin Salzman.
The accusations against Whipple are alleged to have occurred during the past four years.
The arrest took place Dec. 21, and Whipple went to Rush County District Court to make his first appearance.
Salzman, also the Ford County attorney, had said at the time of the first arrest that, “Sheriff Whipple enjoys the presumption of innocence, and he will receive the same courtesy, dignity and respect our office strives to extend to all individuals facing charges in Ness County.”
Salzman added the penalties for each of the counts Whipple faces.
They are: Making false information (counts 1 and 2), severity level 8 non-person felony, punishable by between seven and 23 months imprisonment in Kansas Department of Corrections and/or a fine of up to $100,000.
Perjury (counts 3, 4, 5, and 6), severity level 9 non-person felony, punishable by between five and 17 months imprisonment in KDOC and/or a fine of up to $100,000.
Criminal distribution of firearms to felon is a Class A non-person misdemeanor punishable by up to 12 months in the county jail and/or a fine of up to $2,500.
Official misconduct is a Class A non-person misdemeanor and is punishable by up to 12 months in the county jail and/or a fine of up to $2,500.