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Sedgwick County jailer charged with criminal threats

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Friday, June 13, 2014, at 7:23 p.m.

A Sedgwick County jailer who allegedly threatened co-workers by phone last month has been charged with two counts of criminal threat.

Mark D. Pellock, 47, is accused of “unlawfully threaten(ing) to commit violence” or intending to cause fear to two women on May 2 and May 3, according to a criminal complaint filed in Sedgwick County District Court.

The women named in the complaint are a Sedgwick County Jail sergeant and a deputy, public salary records show; Pellock is a detention sergeant.

He made his first appearance Thursday morning on the felony charges, court records show, and is due back before a judge for a preliminary hearing June 26.

Pellock’s attorney, Kevin Smith, said Friday by phone that the case involves “a management situation” at the jail and “relates back ... to jail politics.” He said his client and the alleged victims had a professional relationship.

“He (Pellock) was a supervisor at the jail and … ultimately the facts will show that he did not threaten anybody,” Smith said.

He added: “When the facts come to light there may be a different outcome than what the county is hoping.”

Sedgwick County Sheriff Jeff Easter disclosed last month that a detention sergeant had been placed on paid administrative leave after he allegedly “threatened violence” against fellow detention deputies who were on duty at the jail.

Pellock is on unpaid leave, Easter said in an e-mailed response to questions. He was not on duty when the calls were made, the sheriff has said.

Easter would not give details about the nature of the alleged threat when he spoke with reporters in May but said at the time that the sergeant may have been under the influence of alcohol.

Smith, Pellock’s attorney, said he had “no response to that” allegation.

Pellock joined the sheriff’s office in 2005 and was promoted to sergeant about three years ago, Easter has said. He was assigned to second shift.

Pellock is free on his own recognizance, court records show, and has been ordered to have no contact with the the victims listed in the criminal complaint filed in the case.

The presumptive sentence for a person with little or no criminal history convicted of criminal threat is five to seven months’ probation, according to Kansas sentencing guidelines.

Reach Amy Renee Leiker at 316-268-6644 or aleiker@wichitaeagle.com. Follow her on Twitter: @amyreneeleiker.

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