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Outgoing St. Joseph County prosecuting attorney caught on camera buying alcohol

John McDonough file from video.PNG
St. Joseph County Prosecutor John McDonough, pictured in this image from a file video, faces drunken driving and open container charges following a Monday, May 11, 2020, car crash. (WWMT/File)

Alcohol was the reason that St. Joseph County Prosecutor John McDonough was arrested for violating his bond Tuesday, police reports state.

Monday, Sept. 14, 2020, was the second time in about four months that McDonough was arrested.

“I think it flags a very serious alcohol problem that needs to be addressed and it’s very serious. It’s what people talked about for a very long time during the campaign and it was just rumor,” said Republican David Marvin, who’s running for county prosecutor after defeating McDonough in the August primary.

According to police documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, on several occasions McDonough was caught on camera buying alcohol.

His initial bond conditions set on July 24, prohibited McDonough from using or buying alcohol or drugs or even visiting a business that predominantly sells alcohol.

Northside Beverage in Three Rivers caught McDonough on five different occasions buying alcohol:

  • Aug. 4 at 11:45 a.m.
  • Aug. 5 at 10:08 a.m.
  • Aug. 7 at 11:46 a.m.
  • Aug. 12 at 1:16 p.m.
  • Aug. 14 at 1:30 p.m.

All dates that were after July 24, violating his bond conditions.

“He owes a lot of people an explanation of what happened, where he’s been all of this time and you know he still hasn’t stepped foot in the office, if I’m not mistaken since February of this year," Marvin said.

There was also an incident reported on Aug. 7 at McDonough’s home. The Three Rivers city manager told investigators McDonough had fallen in his driveway because he was impaired. According to the incident report, McDonough told paramedics that he had been drinking.

Court employees said McDonough stopped going to work weeks before he was charged with drunk driving in May.

McDonough is still being paid his nearly $120,000 dollar annual salary despite other county employees chipping in to get work done.

“It’s going to be a different attitude when the boss shows up, and the first one there and the last one to leave, people will follow suit, and everything is going to get done,” said Marvin.

McDonough failed an alcohol test immediately after signing his bond paperwork Tuesday.

A judge revoked his bond and he was taken to the St Joseph County Jail.

Sheriff Mark Lillywhite said Wednesday McDonough was released from jail after posting a $5,000 cash surety bond.