KCSD Launched Own Investigation Into Warsaw Police

In the midst of being investigated, the Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Department launched its own investigation against Warsaw police.
On Aug. 4, the Indiana State Police took over Warsaw Police Department’s investigation of Sheriff Aaron Rovenstine, Grace College Professor Mark Soto and convict Kevin Bronson. Prior to this, WPD Detective Paul Heaton requested on
March 20, 2015, that all phone calls and meetings including Bronson be recorded, as there had been a pattern of undocumented calls allegedly authorized by Rovenstine. Within hours of this request, Bronson made another unrecorded call to a victim in the case, according to a probable cause affidavit from ISP.
On May 8, the same victim provided Heaton with a recording of another call from Bronson. Consequently, Bronson was transferred to Marshall County Jail Aug. 10. ISP received records from the victim’s service provider confirming the call.
Rovenstine threatened Heaton on two occasions, according to the report. On July 2, Rovenstine told Heaton that he can “paint a story” that makes Heaton look like a crook. Then on Aug. 14, Rovenstine told Heaton that “he has investigations, too, and that Heaton doesn’t want World War III,” the report states.
After these allegations, KCSD launched its investigation of Heaton in October. ISP interviewed three KCSD detectives, who advised the subject of the investigation was conduct-related, not criminal. Five of the department’s eight detectives were cooperating in the investigation, which began sometime between July 30 and Oct. 5. This investigation is ongoing.
ISP stated that it is common practice for officers to use personal cell phones and computers to investigate and discuss their findings. Information pertaining to the investigation of Heaton was found in KCSD registered devices. ISP served a search warrant to KCSD last week and confiscated materials from 10 KCSD employees. Those 10 are Rovenstine, Don Wiesehan, Matt Rapp, JD Ayres, Chris Rager, Mike Speigle, Josh Spangle, Todd Sautter, Chris McKeand and Joe Mooney. ISP believes that search warrant directly relates to the official misconduct charges against Rovenstine in his indictment.
On Tuesday, Michael Miner, formerly of Miner & Lemon, Warsaw, filed an appearance of counsel for Rovenstine. Miner joined James Voyles and Jennifer Lukemeyer, of Voyles Zahn & Paul, Indianapolis, as Rovenstine’s defense attorneys. Rovenstine is scheduled to appear in Kosciusko County Circuit Court March 17.
Rovenstine, Soto and Bronson are all charged in an indictment formed by a grand jury in Kosciusko County in December. The charges for Rovenstine include bribery, assisting a criminal, official misconduct and intimidation. Soto and Bronson have been charged with intimidation and corrupt business influence. Special Prosecutor Nelson Chipman of Marshall County is leading the case.