According to the Paxton Record, WATSEKA — Iroquois County prosecutors have decided not to proceed with the prosecution of a township road commissioner who was charged with official misconduct in February.
State’s Attorney Jim Devine dismissed the case against Daniel L. Bauer, 55, of Cissna Park, during a Nov. 14 hearing in Iroquois County Circuit Court.
A grand jury’s indictment had alleged that Bauer used Pigeon Grove Township’s tax-exempt status to receive a $1,100 discount on a riding lawnmower he bought for his personal use. Bauer serves as a road commissioner for the township.
Devine said he decided to dismiss the case after learning that “material witnesses” planned to testify that the mower was “partly used for township purposes.”
“The mower in question that he bought in his name ... was also used to mow township property,” Devine said. “That was unknown to me at the time this prosecution commenced and we went to the grand jury. So, since the mower was partly used for township purposes, we no longer had a viable case.”
Bauer, who has served as a road commissioner since 1993, bought the mower in April 2011 and saved $1,100 on the purchase price by using the township’s tax identification number. Bauer also was not charged any sales tax.
Watseka attorney Ronald Boyer had filed a motion to dismiss the indictment against Bauer in April. In his written motion, Boyer argued that “the facts alleged in the indictment as to the defendant’s conduct do not demonstrate how the defendant exceeded his lawful authority.”
In August, a grand jury returned an amended indictment, and Bauer pleaded not guilty.