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Prosecutors looking at possible charges against former Beech Grove mayor

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The Marion County Prosecutor is looking at possible criminal charges against a Central Indiana mayor accused of spending taxpayer dollars on campaign videos.

An audit released Tuesday by the state revealed financial irregularities in Beech Grove. It showed former Mayor Joe Wright had used tax money in 2007 to make a campaign video.

The audit also found a lack of oversight in a city loan program that was supposed to help promote downtown development. However, several businesses defaulted over the years; owing more than $100,000 to Beech Grove taxpayers.

Beech Grove’s current mayor, Dennis Buckley, said he’s disappointed by the findings but wants to move on.

“One of the most disappointing things was that someone would take taxpayer dollars and pay for their campaign,” said Buckley. “If I know about it and don’t come forward and discuss it publicly, I’m just as culpable as they are. This needs to come out. People that live here need to understand what happened. And if you tell the truth, people can move on.”

Buckley said his staff have made a lot of changes since he took office 14 months ago. He has since stopped the city-funded redevelopment loan program for now.

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