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Man charged with murder in wife's death wins primary for township board position in Boone County

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Posted at 2:59 PM, May 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-09 14:10:02-04

BOONE COUNTY — A man facing a murder charge in connection with the death of his wife was one of three to win the primary for a township board position during Tuesday's primary in Boone County.

Andrew Wilhoite was charged in March after a detective alleged in court documents he threw a cement flower pot at his wife, Elizabeth Wilhoite, and dumped her in a nearby creek.

Andrew received 60 of the 276 total votes for Republicans for the Clinton Township Board, according to election results from Boone County.

Boone County Clerk Jessica Fouts said he is still on the ballot for the fall at this time, but there is a procedure where he can withdraw.

Fouts said there are three positions on the board. Two other people, Bradley Smith and Michael Young, were also on the ballot.

"Election process dictated that Mr. Wilhoite could not be removed from the May 3rd Primary Election ballot," the Boone County GOP wrote in a Facebook statement. "Since Mr. Wilhoite is awaiting trial and has not been convicted of a felony, he cannot be removed as a candidate by the Republican Party or any other election process."

If convicted of a felony before the November election, he would immediately be disqualified and new ballots would be printed, according to the party.

Indiana Election Division Co-director Brad King tells WRTV he is unaware of any Indiana precedent where an individual ran for an elected office while incarcerated and awaiting trial. There have been instances of candidates who were charged but remained on the ballot, but they were released on bail or on their own recognizance

King says a candidate nominated in the May primary can withdraw for any reason by filing a form with the appropriate office (in this case the Boone County Circuit Court Clerk) no later than noon on July 15, 2022.

"If a candidate is eventually disqualified by a felony conviction, Indiana Code 3-8-7-28 requires the candidate to immediately filed the CAN-24 [form] withdrawal notice even after the noon July 15 deadline," King said in an email.

According to online records from the Boone County Jail, Wilhoite is still being held without bond. A jury trial is still scheduled for Aug. 29, according to online court records.