Gazette, 20 Aug 2010 (Valentine).
Prince George's County Sheriff Michael A. Jackson, a candidate for county executive, has come under fire for the departmental shooting of a pet during an eviction, a warrant error involving a wanted man who shot a teenager, an indictment of two staffers for embezzlement allegations and a slap on the wrist from a judge for reprimanding a union president — all within the past month.
"I was leaning heavily toward Michael Jackson, but this is a political minefield," said Del. Michael L. Vaughn (D-Dist. 24) of Bowie, who said the reports involving Jackson give him "a little pause."
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On Aug. 4, a deputy shot a Rottweiler while performing an eviction, renewing concerns about the way deputies handle animals. It is the seventh dog shooting by deputies since Jackson took office in 2002, according to internal sheriff's office memos.
Jackson's office is also under fire for failing to post a warrant last month for Marcus Shipman, who was wanted on assault charges. Shipman was arrested Aug. 9 after he allegedly shot his 17-year-old girlfriend. It was later revealed that the sheriff's office failed to put out the July 26 warrant for the man, which Jackson has called "a serious lapse" and said the agency is investigating how the error occurred.
On July 30, two high-ranking staff members in his agency, Lt. Wendy Tyler and Capt. Nancy Ridgely, were indicted on charges of allegedly taking $11,000 from the deputy's union. Even after the allegations were brought to his attention in 2009, Jackson kept Ridgely as chairwoman of his campaign finance committee, and Tyler was named by Jackson to run the department's Domestic Violence Unit. Both women are now on paid leave. On Aug. 13, a judge ordered Jackson to rescind a reprimand given to the sheriff's union president, Robert Cease, for speaking out about the alleged embezzlement.
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Jackson said he does not think the criticism will hinder his election chances. ...