William “Bill” Creasy resigned his position as District 1 constable in April of 2019 after being indicted on official misconduct charges, but he won the Aug. 6, 2020 constable race with 72 votes as opposed to current constable Ryan Christian’s 71 votes.
However, District Attorney Dan Armstrong told the Review that his office filed a new motion in court this week alleging that Creasy has violated the plea deal he took in September of 2019 to reduce felony charges to misdemeanors.
If Judge John Duggar grants Armstrong’s office this motion, Creasy will not be allowed to assume the constable position on Sept. 1 and will face further legal ramifications.
Creasy elected in 2018, resigns in 2019
Bill Creasy was elected District 1 constable in August of 2018 to represent the Allandale and Mount Carmel communities and was scheduled to officially take office on Sept. 1 of that year.
However, on Aug. 15, 2018, Creasy conducted a traffic stop with blue lights on a man who resides in his neighborhood.
As a result, a Hawkins County grand jury indicted him on charges of official misconduct and official oppression in February of 2019. Both of which are Class E felonies punishable by one to two years.
In April of 2019, Creasy resigned from his position as constable. In June of 2019, the County Commission then appointed Ryan Christian to fill the position until the next county general election (this year).
Whoever won the race in this year’s election would have only served the remainder of Creasy’s term, which would have ended on August 31, 2022.
On Aug. 30 of 2019, Creasy appeared in Hawkins County Criminal Court, where he pleaded guilty to the reduced Class A misdemeanor charges of attempted official oppression and attempted official misconduct.
He was granted judicial diversion by Judge John Dugger, which means that, if Creasy completes the terms of probation on Aug. 30, 2020, his record can be expunged.
Armstrong told the Review that a condition of the plea agreement was that Creasy resign from office for the remainder of what would have been his term (ending in 2022).
“There was nothing that would have kept him from re-running at the end of this term in 2022 for that office again if he chose to,” Armstrong added.
District Attorney says Creasy violated plea agreement
“We believe that, in seeking to be a write-in candidate to fill the unexpired term from which he resigned as part of the plea agreement, is a violation of that plea agreement,” Armstrong told the Review. “Part of the plea agreement was, and the reason that we agreed to let him plea to the misdemeanors, was that he resigns from office. Obviously, that means he resigns the term of office. By presenting himself as a write-in to fill the unexpired term, he’s clearly violated our agreement. Therefore, we’re asking the court to set aside his diversion and to re-sentence him.”
If the court grants Armstrong’s motion, Creasy’s record will not be expunged when he completes the probationary period as it would have originally been. Duggar could also re-sentence Creasy.
“At the time that he (Duggar) granted Creasy’s diversion, he put Creasy on probation for a certain number of months (11 months and 29 days),” Armstrong said. “The judge can go back and say, ‘now I find you guilty,’ and ‘you have violated the judicial diversion’ and sentence him to jail.”
Administrator of Elections Crystal Rogers told the Review that, in this case, the County Commission would likely appoint someone to fill the unexpired constable term until the next election in 2022.
However, if the court denies the motion, Armstrong said, “there would be nothing to keep Creasy from becoming constable.” He would then take office Sept. 1 and fill out the rest of his original term, ending Aug. 31, 2022.
Creasy is set to appear before Duggar at the end of August.
“Take them on good faith”
Administrator of Elections Crystal Rogers told the Review that the issue regarding Creasy’s plea agreement is only between Creasy and the District Attorney’s office—not the election office.
“All we can do is take the person’s certificate of write-in on good faith,” Rogers said. “If he had been convicted of a felony, that information would have been sent to us, but, in this case, we have no record of him being convicted of any felony.”
Rogers added, “It is up to the write-in candidates to get their name out there and let people know that they are a write-in. Their name will not appear on the ballot, and we don’t put their name out there, and we can’t.”
Creasy claims charges are false
Creasy has said in published reports regarding the charges against him, “The charges against me were made up and totally false. This area has a lot of drug activity and with me having a dog trained in narcotics was a threat, so it was a way to get me out. Shortly after this happened, my neighbor was busted with close to two pounds of meth, so this is a real problem here as everywhere else. My record will be wiped clean of all this by the 20th of this month, so we are starting over with a clean plate. I look forward to helping my neighbors.”
However, Armstrong told the Review, “My response to that would be, if Mr. Creasy wants to go before the judge, undo the plea agreement completely and go to trial, we will be more than happy to do that.”