Lieutenant Ken McClenic, a 28 year veteran of the Sheriff's Department, has been charged with perjury. This is all tied in with the criminal case involving former Jackson County Sheriff, Mike Byrd. After nearly 30 years of service, Lieutenant McClenic finds himself on the other side of the law. The reason: an indictment handed down by the Jackson County Grand Jury, charging him with perjury. District Attorney, Anthony Lawrence, says, "It's a sad day." Today's arrest stems from Lieutenant McClenic's conflicting testimony in the criminal case against former Jackson County Sheriff Byrd. McClenic's testimony to a grand jury ultimately led to Sheriff Byrd being indicted on criminal charges. However, later in September, McClenic changed his testimony, shocking Jackson County District Attorney, Lawrence. Lawrence also says, “Nobody's above the law." News 25 tried to get an interview with Sheriff Charlie Britt, who took over as Interim Sheriff on January 6th. He refused to comment on McClenic's arrest, but the Sheriff's Office did issue a media release, reading in part, "Lieutenant McClenic was immediately terminated for violating departmental and civil service policies."
Lawrence was quick to point out the judicial procedure for anyone arrested for a crime. If convicted, McClenic could be sentenced to a minimum of ten years in prison and a 10,000 dollar fine. Sheriff Byrd was convicted on state and felony criminal charges, resigned from his office as Sheriff, and is currently on probation. The charge stems from McClenic's testimony that he felt pressured by Byrd to arrest a man on murder charges that he thought was innocent. McClenic gave conflicting testimony in a later trial, saying he may have been confused during his prior testimony before a grand jury because of stress and anxiety.