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Attorney Brad Swihart Files As Independent Candidate For Lawrence County Prosecutor
Updated June 21, 2018 7:07 AM
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(BEDFORD) - Attorney Brad Swihart has filed his candidacy for Lawrence County Prosecutor with the Lawrence County Clerk's Office and the Indiana Election Division. He is running as an Independent candidate against Republican nominee Samuel C. Arp.

The two will be on the ballot for the general election Nov. 6.

Arp defeated incumbent Michelle Woodward in the Republican primary on May 8.

Those who wish to fill vacancies on the ballot in November have until June 30 to file petitions.

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Swihart posted the following on his campaign Facebook page:

Good evening. I would like to take a minute of your time to introduce myself.

My name is Bradley Swihart and I am running for the position of Prosecuting Attorney in Lawrence County as an Independent. I graduated from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School and was admitted to the practice of law in Indiana in 2012.

I joined John Haury in the practice of law here in Bedford shortly after I was admitted to the Indiana Bar. Since John's death in 2015, I have been a sole practitioner in Bedford.

My wife and I made Lawrence County our home four years ago. We chose Mitchell because it reminded us so much of the small towns we both came from. We spend most of our free time working with our horses or exploring Spring Mill State Park. As much as there is to love about being here, every place has its struggles. And in Lawrence County, like most other small communities, that struggle is the drug epidemic.

There is not a police officer, lawyer, judge, or prosecutor in Southern Indiana who does not recognize and agree that drugs and addiction are the primary problems facing their communities. The strain on police, court, and rehabilitative resources has consistently been the primary complaint of those who work within the criminal justice field. Recent changes in the law which require all low-level felony cases be housed in county jails as opposed the Department of Corrections has further frustrated efforts to address the problem. Our system is overwhelmed and our people are tired of opening the newspaper and seeing the same drug-related stories every morning.

I am seeking the office of Prosecuting Attorney because I know that I can make a difference. I am seeking the office as an Independent because I believe that the office should be a position free of politics. Seeking justice within your community should not be a partisan issue!

As Prosecutor I will enforce the law. We will seek out those who would jeopardize the health and safety of our community. We will ensure defendants take responsibility for their actions. That, however, cannot be the end of the conversation. The problems we are facing cannot be solved by our criminal justice system alone. We have saddled our police and law enforcement officers with the overwhelming task of curbing this opioid epidemic. My goal is to build a coalition within our community that gets to the heart of the issue with an eye on breaking the cycle of addiction and poverty. Progress is being made through Lawrence County Probation, Community Corrections, our three Problem Solving Courts, the increased efforts of our local faith-based organizations, as well as the work of the Lawrence County Drug Treatment Council. There is still much work to be done.

We need elected officials who are willing to have an honest and frank conversation with their constituents about what is going on in their communities. When it comes to addiction and drug crimes, there are no easy answers. If there were easy answers we would not have ended up with a national drug abuse epidemic. This epidemic cuts across all social and economic classes. It doesn't care about politics, race, gender, or age. It affects those in rural America as well as those in cities and suburbs. If you haven't been touched by addiction either personally or through a friend or family member then consider yourself one of the lucky.

My time practicing criminal law in Lawrence County has given me a unique perspective on the issues we are facing. I value my experience as a substantial asset in being a prosecutor. I know the evidentiary pitfalls to look out for in prosecuting a case. Understanding the Constitution, and how it is applied to we as citizens is the difference between a Defendant avoiding prosecution or taking responsibility for their actions. I have seen firsthand that behind every file is a person. Sitting across from someone suffering from addiction in a jail visiting room while they tearfully ask for your help changes the way you view the problem.

I am seeking the office of Lawrence County Prosecutor because I believe in Lawrence County. The problems we are facing are not new, uncharted, or unique. These are problems that professionals in the field have been working on for years. This is a National Epidemic. Only through commitment and hard work will we make Lawrence County a more perfect community. I invite anyone with comments or questions to contact me at my office at (812) 275-4446. Thank you for your time and consideration. I hope that I can earn your vote for Prosecutor on November 6.

Sincerely,

Brad Swihart



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