Mayor to have hearing on assault charge

By: 
Larry Limpf

A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for June 10 at 10 a.m.in Ottawa County Municipal Court for Matthew L. Damschroder, the mayor of Elmore, who faces a misdemeanor assault charge.
Damschroder, 52, of Rice Street, has entered a not guilty plea.
He is accused of assaulting John Kaylor, a village resident, on April 28.
According to a report by the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office, a village police officer was dispatched to 352 Jackson St. about 9:38 p.m. on a report of an assault. The officer made contact with Kaylor, who was bleeding from his face and was transported to St. Charles Hospital.
The officer than contacted the sheriff’s office and a deputy interviewed Kaylor at the hospital.
The report states Kaylor’s right eye was swollen and bleeding and his left eye was also bruised.
Kaylor told the deputy he was at the Jackson Street site with others, including Damschroder and they were consuming alcoholic beverages. He said he asked about setting up a meeting with the mayor to discuss an issue he was having with the village and his plumbing, heating and wiring business.
The mayor became irate, Kaylor told the deputy, and threw something in Kaylor’s direction and the mayor was escorted out of the building by others.
When Kaylor left, he was assaulted by the mayor on a gravel driveway, he told the deputy.
The mayor was questioned about midnight April 29 at his home and he admitted to being at the Jackson Street address and confirmed he had an argument with Kaylor but denied he was involved in an altercation.
He was arrested without incident and transported to the Ottawa County Jail.
Asked whether the mayor should resign or not make a decision until the court case is completed, Rick Claar, president of village council, said he didn’t want to make any judgment while the case is pending.
“I refuse to pass judgment on anything Matt should do. I don't know what happened and, for me to say anything about whether he should resign or not would, indeed, be passing judgment either way,” Claar said.
As council president, he would be next in line for the mayor’s post if Damschroder were to step down.
Court records show the case had been dismissed because the complaint wasn’t properly signed and executed but was later refiled.

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