Dutey#8217;s credibility in Lawrence County cannot be challenged

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 14, 2008

The Ironton Tribune has recently chosen to run an article and an editorial about personal attacks and money allegedly stolen from Lawrence County’s tax funds.

Although available details are sketchy because of the status of the ongoing investigation, The Tribune has chosen to give a public forum to mistaken individuals with a personal vendetta and, apparently, too much time on their hands.

As citizens of Lawrence County, we agree that the public has a right to know if its tax money has been diverted, and a right to know that those responsible will be held accountable.

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We know of nothing that would lead us to believe that the interests of Lawrence County are not being protected.

Some matters should be held confidential until an investigation is completed, or you end up with a witch hunt.

A witch hunt may be entertaining and make good press, but does not comply with our system of justice.

Most distressing to the undersigned, the unquestioned good name of Ray T. Dutey has been dragged into this mess. Moose, as we (and most everyone) know him, is our uncle.

We could not love or be more proud of Moose or more grateful to be a part of his family.

He is truly an honest, caring, responsible, Christian man.

All of us have looked up to him while growing up and learned a lot from him about how to be involved, trustworthy, contributing members of society.

As voting citizens of Lawrence County, we also respect Moose and appreciate all that he has done for this county.

No one loves Lawrence County and does more for it than Moose.

His office is well-run, the service is courteous, and everyone receives the assistance they need — whatever their political affiliation.

Moose had no control over, or involvement in, the reported diversion of funds from county coffers.

Likewise, he has no control over the ongoing investigation.

He has cooperated fully with the prosecutor’s office. Nothing has been hidden, nothing in the process has been altered.

In all things in which he is involved, Moose conducts himself in the most admirable and ethical manner possible.

How do we know? We are his family and know him better than anyone. Ask us.

I also write this on behalf of Connie Deeds, Sandee Brammer, Rick Mader, Mike Burcham, Susan Heyard, Sue Ellen Wilson, Patty Johnson, Jim Dutey, Joni Willis, Gina Sexton, Scott Dutey, Darren Morgan, Denis Turner, and Kari Wilson.