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Six apply for Dover interim mayor post

| May 11, 2022

DOVER (WJER) (May 11, 2022) – Six people have applied for the Dover interim mayor position to serve in place of Richard Homrighausen during his suspension from office.

The applicants include Dover City Council President Shane Gunnoe and Dover City Councilman Robert Mueller. The other names are Robert Coburn, Orliage Byrom, Matthew Paxton, and Jim Devney.

Tuscarawas County Assistant Prosecutor Robert Stephenson provided the list of names in response to a public records request to Probate Court Judge Adam Wilgus, who is conducting the search

A committee of six Dover residents will narrow the list to two, and Wilgus will decide from there. The committee members are Bill Harding, Bruce Sexton, Brad Bielski, Kathy Walton, Anne Bruno, and Gail Houglan.

Wilgus is tasked with picking the interim mayor follow state statutes, according to Dover Law Director Doug O’Meara.

The state suspended Homrighausen last week as he awaits a Sept. 20 jury trial on a grand jury indictment that includes 15 criminal counts, including third degree felony theft in office. A conviction on that count would disqualify him from public office. Homrighausen had pleaded not guilty.

Wilgus indicated in an email to committee members he did not intend on sharing their names with the press or the public until after they made their recommendations. The email says he intended to treat it as if it were a jury trial and protect the process from undue influence.

Ultimately, Stephenson provided the lists of names in response to public records requests from WJER and the Times-Reporter.

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