Embattled Westmoreland County sheriff won’t quit, attorney vows |

Embattled Westmoreland County sheriff won’t quit, attorney vows

Rich Cholodofsky
Dan Speicher | Tribune-Review
Ryan Tutera, attorney for Westmoreland County Sheriff Jonathan Held, speaks after Held's arraignment at District Judge Chris Flanigan's office in Greensburg on Monday, Feb. 26, 2018.
Dan Speicher | Tribune-Review
Westmoreland County Sheriff Jonathan Held, poses for a portrait inside the gun vault at the Westmoreland County Courthouse, in Greensburg, on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2018.
Sean Stipp | Tribune-Review
Westmoreland County Sheriff Jonathan Held arrives at the Greensburg office of District Judge Chris Flanigan on Feb. 26, 2018. Held is accused of ordering his staff to campaign for him while on duty.

Westmoreland County Sheriff Jonathan Held is expected to remain in office for the foreseeable future.

Defense attorney Ryan Tutera said Tuesday, a day after one felony and two misdemeanor charges were filed against the two-term Republican sheriff, that Held will not resign and will remain in office until voted out.

Tutera said Held will continue to work and has no plans for taking a leave of absence while the criminal case against him moves through the court system.

Held can only be removed from office by the governor after being impeached by the state Senate, county solicitor Melissa Guiddy said.

It appears there are four options for Held’s political future:

• Remain in office pending the outcome of the case;

• Take a paid leave of absence;

• Be impeached by the state Senate and removed from office by the governor;

• Lose a bid to be re-elected.

Held’s current four-year term expires at the end of 2019.

County commissioners in November called on the state Senate to impeach Held, but no action was taken.

Rich Cholodofsky is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-830-6293 or [email protected].

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