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Former Indiana police chief arrested on fraud, theft, ghost employment charges

Former Indiana police chief arrested on fraud, theft, ghost employment charges

LAWRENCEBURG, Ind. (WISH) — The former police chief of a southern Indiana city was arrested Monday night on charges of bribery, official misconduct, fraud, theft, and ghost employment, the Indiana State Police say.

Harlis S. Hoover Jr., 37, of Versailles, faces 17 felony charges, state police say. He was booked into the Dearborn County jail in Lawrenceburg on Monday night.

A report in July from a “concerned citizen” about possible fraud led state police detectives to begin to investigate. Hoover was put on administrative leave when the investigation began, but a state police news release on Monday night called him the former police chief.

Detectives say Hoover in December 2021 is believed to have borrowed $10,000 from the “concerned citizen” for the purchase of an automobile. However, no evidence could be found that Hoover ever purchased the automobile. Hoover then allegedly convinced the “concerned citizen,” a man, to forgive the loan while Hoover was the Rising Sun police chief, the state police say in a news release issued Monday night.

The investigation also found Hoover had borrowed money for the purchase of other vehicles, although no evidence could be found that he purchased them, and the money was not repaid.

In two cases, police say, Hoover was believed to have purchased and sold vehicles for a profit without ever signing the titles.

“Other instances of fraud, theft, and official misconduct were uncovered during the investigation,” the news release said. “Multiple instances of ghost employment by Hoover were uncovered during the investigation where he was allegedly taking care of personal business, often outside of Ohio County, while claiming to be on duty in Rising Sun, Indiana at the time.”

No online court documents were available on Hoover’s case on Monday night.