Michigan City mayor charged with leaving scene of crash

GATE COUNTY, Ind. – Michigan City Mayor Duane Parry has been charged with leaving the scene of an accident, a misdemeanor.

An Indiana State Police report says the mayor was driving his city-owned vehicle when he was involved in an accident Aug. 5 while leaving an event in Washington Park.

Parry’s vehicle rolled over a pipe flap, which dislodged his SUV’s entire exhaust system, according to reports.

A Michigan City Police sergeant searched to see if an accident report had been filed, but could not find one. The Sergeant informed Chief Dion Campbell of the unrelated accident.

The chief contacted the mayor and informed him that an accident report should have been completed. He arranged for a sergeant to meet the mayor at a local dealership where the vehicle was being repaired, reports said.

The mayor told the sergeant that he left the event around 9 p.m., did not see the bib and ran over it. The mayor pulled over and removed the dislodged and damaged exhaust and left it on the ground, and drove home, according to reports.

Mayor Parry said he planned to return for the exhaust the next day, but would not fit in his vehicle. He said he didn’t consider it an accident because he didn’t hit another vehicle, according to reports.

The mayor said he had a few beers with his meal at the event that evening, but was not intoxicated when he left, according to reports.

After speaking with others who said they had witnessed the accident, the sergeant requested a second interview with the mayor.

The mayor was late for the meeting and said he was late because he wanted to review the sergeant’s report first. The sergeant asked how the mayor got the report, but refused to say and ended the interview, according to the PSI report.

The report said Michigan City Police Chief Dion Campbell emailed the report to the mayor’s office and other members of the administration as per city procedure. However, as the mayor was involved in the accident, this created a conflict of interest.

The sergeant, according to the police report, believes this constitutes aiding a criminal. No charges have been filed against Chief Campbell, but he retired earlier this week.

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