Marion County Sheriff Arrested and Charged With Perjury

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The State Attorney’s Office for the Fifth Judicial District on Friday indicted Marion County Sheriff Chris Blair for two counts of perjury in an official proceeding and one count of official misconduct.

The perjury charges relate to the case of Dustin Heathman, who was convicted in December for the 2014 attempted murder of sheriff’s office deputies.

If convicted of the charges — all third-degree felonies — Blair could face up to five years in prison and $5,000 in fines on each count. Blair was booked into Marion County Jail on Friday and released about 3:30 p.m. after posting bond.

Sheriff’s office spokeswoman Lauren Lettelier wrote in a Friday afternoon news release, “The MCSO is going through an immediate transition and will provide further information in a responsible and timely manner.”

Gov. Rick Scott has appointed the Attorney General’s Office Director of Division of Victim Services and Criminal Justice Programs Emery Gainey as interim sheriff.

Gainey said he wanted to reassure Marion County that its residents will get professional law enforcement services.

About Alex Ciccarone

Alex is a reporter for WUFT News and can be contacted by calling 786-368-3474 or emailing news@wuft.org.

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