Kosciusko County Sheriff charged with bribery, intimidation, official misconduct
KOSCIUSKO COUNTY, Ind. - A grand jury has handed up an indictment against Kosciusko County Sheriff C. Aaron Rovenstine, Mark H. Soto and inmate Kevin Bronson for multiple counts related to events that happened in the Kosciusko County jail, according to the probable cause affidavit.
Rovenstine and Bronson are facing ten counts, Soto is facing six.
Rovenstine is facing three counts of bribery, one count of intimidation, one count of assisting a criminal and five counts of official misconduct.
Soto is facing three counts of corrupt business influence, and three counts of intimidation.
Inmate Kevin Bronson is charged with three counts of corrupt business influence and seven counts of intimidation.
Rovenstine allegedly accepted $20,000 and $10,000 for allowing unsupervised and unrecorded visits and phone conversations between Bronson and Soto.
He is accused of threatening law enforcement officer Paul Heaton for opening a criminal investigation into the conduct of inmate Bronson.
Rovenstine also allegedly assisted Bronson and Soto after he learned they were subjects of a criminal investigation.
Rovenstine was a public servant at the time the alleged acts were committed.
Soto and Bronson's corrupt business influence charges are for allegedly knowingly or intentionally receiving money through acts of intimidation against various individuals and using the proceeds to operate Young Dragon Enterprises.
They are also accused of threatening the life of David Baker or members of his family if he did not provide legal services for a movie contract and/or book contract without payment.
Bronson and Soto are also accused of threatening to beat or kill Nate McLaurin or members of his family.
Another charge of intimidation is for allegedly forcing McLaurin to secure periodic payments from Tyler Silveus to Bronson and Young Dragon Enterprises totaling $84,012.50.
Bronson is accused of intimidation for threatening to kill or beat Bryan Hickerson or members of his family, allegedly forcing Corey Greene to pay $500 and threatening to kill or beat Greene, and threatening Dr. Steven Hollar with a beating if he did not provide free dental services.
Marshall County Prosecutor Nelson Chipman held a press conference at 3 p.m. on Monday about the arrest. He read the charging documents, but did not provide any additional details in the case.
He said Bronson's racketeering charges were related to his attempts to fund either a book or movie deal. A video of Bronson was played before the press conference. You can view it here.
Rovenstine turned himself in to the Elkhart County jail and was booked at 11:38 a.m. He bonded out at 12:11 p.m.
Soto is in custody at the Kosciusko County Jail.
Soto is an employee of Grace College and Seminary. He has been placed on administrative leave.
Amanda Banks, Director of Public Relations released the following statement:
The details surrounding this arrest are personal, not professional. They have nothing to do with Grace College. It is the policy of Grace College to not comment on ongoing legal or personnel matters.