Sheriff: ICP gathering bigger problem than benefit - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Sheriff: ICP gathering bigger problem than benefit


Hardin County faces another budget challenge, after hundreds attended the annual Insane Clown Posse gathering of the Juggalos.

Hardin County Sheriff Lloyd Cullison says while the event was only a few days, officers have been busy for nearly two weeks with those attending the event.

Hardin County deputies escort two inmates back to jail after a court appearance. Both apparently were in town for the annual ICP gathering at Hog Rock Campground.  But the men are just two, of some 200 people Sheriff Cullison says officers arrested over the last two weeks. He says a majority of arrests were drug related. 

"I had my jail full," Cullison said. "I had them waiting downstairs. We had to hold them downstairs to get them processed."

The spike in arrests also created extra work inside the Hardin County courthouse.

"The judge and the state's attorney pitched in and they came in on their own time, to process some of them and set their bond just to get them out of the jail," Cullison explained.

Add Hardin County Circuit Clerk Nancy Pennell to that group as well. On Tuesday her office still had several ICP cases and tickets to file.

Pennell said she doesn't have this much work on a regular court week.

"We stay fairly busy but nothing to this magnitude," Pennell added.

Some of the officers who wrote the tickets are Illinois State Police. But Cullison says despite the extra help, all the money budgeted for his department this year was used up in the last two weeks.

"The cost that we're out with the manpower, the ones that had to go to the hospital, the ambulance crews most of that we don't even get paid for, if we can collect a small fine that helps offset the cost," Cullison said.  

Cullison adds what is collected doesn't make up for all that's spent by his department while the Juggalos are camped out at Hog Rock.

"The citizens of Hardin County deserve police protection and we're to the point we don't have any money to run the department," Cullison said.

Cullison says he is working to get a meeting to with local and state law makers to address the problem. Meanwhile Hardin County Board Vice Chairman Larry Steward says overall the gathering of the Juggalos runs the county financially into the ground.

No one with the event could be reached for comment at the time of broadcast.

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