Wants to focus on justice for crime victims with re-election bid
By Bill Shope
Scioto Voice Writer
Current Scioto County Prosecutor Shane Tieman is adamant regarding the outcome of the November 2018 election for his current job-“It’s all about Day One. Whoever ends up sitting in this chair, they will have to ready on day one. Crime will not take a break because of the transition of this office and people will not temporarily suspend legal actions. The work load is tremendous and vitally important every single day. I believe that I am the candidate most prepared and experienced to serve the people of Scioto County, beginning day one.”
Tieman, 47, has served as the top legal officer of the county since July of 2018, when long-time Prosecutor Mark Kuhn stepped down in order to take a seat on the bench of the Court of Common Pleas. Previously, the Minford resident had served two tours of duty as an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, first from 1999-2001 and then later, from 2010 until 2018, a decade of service to the office. Tieman also has served the residents of the area as a Magistrate for Scioto County Juvenile and Probate Courts from 2004-2008, while operating a private law practice four years prior.
“During my years in the legal profession, I found my true calling was working with law enforcement. For over half of my career I have worked as a City Prosecutor, Assistant Prosecutor and now as County Prosecutor. Asa magistrate, I worked with law enforcement in a different role, bit I like being in the trenches, working with our local law enforcement on a daily basis. It’s not uncommon to get calls on the weekends and at all time of the day and night-I believe this office must be made available as a resource to the officers working hard in the field, so first and foremost they know that whether they are speaking to me or one of the Assistant Prosecutors, they know this office has a wealth of experience to call on. Someone that has encountered crime situations before, that knows what is needed at trial in order to prove a case and can advise them accurately,” Tieman offered.
Tieman felt that his vast litany of experiences coming from a number of different sources has prepared him for the job as County Prosecutor, long-term. “When I worked for Lynn Grimshaw in the early 90’s, I focused on juvenile prosecutions and did some of the same work for Mark. Later, I moved to the civil division of the Prosecutor’s office, and did delinquent tax foreclosures as well as represented the school districts located in Scioto County. BY doing that, I was able to develop a good knowledge of the civil base of this office. A lot of people don’t know that the civil cases we work with are just as large, in number, as the criminal side. This office is the legal adviser for all county elected officials and most of the county boards, as well as townships. That is a lot of different areas to be familiar with and know first-hand. Everything from cemetery law to collective bargaining and easements are included in this job description.”
While the experiences have reduced the number of “surprises” that can occur with a job that covers so many facets, Tieman was quick to note, and “There is a distinct difference in the roles of Assistant Prosecutor and County Prosecutor. There are a number of things I know, as County Prosecutor now, that are not necessarily in the public eye as yet. Whether it be ongoing investigations or potential issues down the road with budget issues, there are things that kindle every day. It’s almost like being in the role of a firefighter. I actually like to try cases-I much prefer defending the people of Scioto County that some of the other, even though necessary matters. I have had experience involving all the roles I’ve faced as Prosecutor, so feel I was well prepared. When Mark (Kuhn) began talking with me about this job, he was great about explaining a number of things, so I did not come in with blinders on. The adjustment was also made easier by a staff that has a verifiable wealth of experience. They have made it far smoother and better than it would have been otherwise. Maggie Apel, Danielle Parker and Marcia Shedroff in the Civil Division are all so well-versed in their areas. Pat Apel, Joe Hale, Julie Hutchinson and Jay Willis on the Juvenile, Criminal and Appeal side ads up to a very experienced and outstanding office.””
The current Scioto County Prosecutor also took the opportunity to address a reference made to harsh sentencing and prosecution. “We fight crime. Crime comes in all shapes and sizes and we are experienced in the prosecution of these crimes, whether it be aggravated murder, theft or burglary. We have seen all of that in Scioto County and we know how to address these matters. Every single one of my prosecutors has experience in prosecuting every one of these very serious felony crimes. Part of the crimes committed in Scioto County deal with drugs. A lot of crimes are drug related, with a number of our cases related to drug possession and a very large portion of our cases deal with drug trafficking. We’ve had very successful prosecutions in those areas. But relating to drug possession, there has been somewhat of a false narrative going around that what this office does is locks them in prison and throws away the key. That could not be further from the truth. I recently reviewed the number of people we have in prison, which varies from day to day and right now we have approximately 931 people incarcerated, from Scioto County. When I say Scioto County that means they were sentenced here. Of that number, about 35% did not reside in this county. That should tell you we are working to put away drug dealers that are coming from outside the county and are peddling their poison here. Again, of that number, only 37 were imprisoned because of possession. I can tell you some of those were given a charge of possession over a higher charge and some had reached their limit and needed to be in prison. Even when some are choosing prison over treatment, we have done our best to get them into treatment. For those that say we lack compassion and we are not addressing the problem on a multi-faceted level, well, I take exception to that. It is simply, not true.”
Tieman continued by stating his desire to focus on the victims of crime as well. “In some way, drug offenders can be considered victims, but the real victims are the kids that suffer because their parents are on drugs or the grandparents that have to raise their grandchildren due to their sons or daughters drug addictions. The victims are also Children’s Services whose caseloads are overloaded. The people who have had their property stolen from them to help feed a drug habit are victims,” the Prosecutor said, his voice rising. “Those are the victims. I like to bring victims of crime in and discuss the matters in front of us with them-to let them know we are going to fight for them and inform them of their rights. Am I satisfied with outcomes as a whole? No-I believe we do a very good job, but I believe we can do better. I want this office to continue to improve on how we communicate with victims of crime-maybe unhappy with the result, but understanding how we got where we are. I also want to believe we can do more community outreach and make people more aware of the true victims of the community. I would also like to increase our opportunities in middle schools and high schools on a number of issues, assault, and bullying and suicide prevention. While I’m pleased with our victim advocacy program, I want to continue to improve and expand.”
Tieman, a graduate Clay High School, earned a B.A in Social Sciences at The Ohio State University, while being awarded his Juris Doctorate from Ohio Northern.
I have devoted practically all of my professional life to the people of this county and I would like to continue that work. I would sincerely appreciate the public’s vote of confidence this November.”