Commissioner faces public for first time since indecent exposure

Commissioner faces public for first time since indecent exposure arrest

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"I can't elaborate on that. It's in the court system and we'll let the judicial system take its path," Ownby said about the alleged May incident. "I can't elaborate on that. It's in the court system and we'll let the judicial system take its path," Ownby said about the alleged May incident.

KNOXVILLE (WATE) – A county commissioner arrested in May for indecent exposure at Sharps Ridge Memorial Park addressed the public Thursday, but did not talk directly about his arrest.

Commissioner Jeff Ownby, 45, was arrested after police said he was having oral sex with another man.

Ownby's appearance in a town hall meeting at Bearden Public Library was his first public event since the much-publicized arrest.

Ownby said Thursday's appearance "was to let people know I'm still the 4th District commissioner and I will remain the district commissioner."

The meeting was held to talk discuss charter amendments in the upcoming November ballot. Only a few people were in attendance, which included his wife, grandchildren, and County Commissioner Dave Wright.

"I think it's something he needs to do, you got to take constituent concerns. That's what he's doing here," Wright said, about Ownby.

While he is putting himself out there, Ownby did not want to talk about the alleged incident in the park.

"I can't elaborate on that. It's in the court system and we'll let the judicial system take its path," Ownby said about the alleged May incident.

He was willing, however, to comment on the support he received following the arrest.

"It's been good. A lot of people sending me emails and phone calls saying they support me and are not casting judgment. Everyone's innocent until proven guilty," Ownby said.

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