Republicans in Indiana have chosen a man jailed after being charged with first-degree murder for the death of his wife as the winner of the Republican primary for one of the three open seats on the Clinton Township Board.
Charged with hitting his wife over the head with a concrete flower pot and dumping her body in a creek, Andrew Wilhoite, 40, told the police that he “dropped her body over the side of a bridge.”
Wilhoite had taken to Facebook earlier in the month, hailing his wife as a “beautiful soul” after her battle with breast cancer finally seemed over.
Behind the scenes, however, the couple had been fighting over Wilhoite’s extra-marital affair, an affair that led Nikki Wilhoite to file for divorce.
After Elizabeth “Nikki” Wilhoite failed to show up to work at her job at an oral surgery clinic, co-workers reported her missing. An investigation turned up blood at the farmhouse she shared with her husband and kids. Stunned by the news, the couple’s neighbor Laura Vaughn told Fox 59:
“How can you do that to the mother of your kids? She just finished chemo and stuff. She was trying to get well and for him to do something like that to her it’s not right.”
She went on to say:
“If he’s guilty he should pay severely for what he did to his wife and the mother of his children.”
But despite Wilhoite’s confession to the Boone County Sheriff’s department, Republicans still saw fit to put him on the ballot for the town board.
Brad King, co-director of the election division said:
“There is no legal reason he can’t be a candidate. Under our system you are innocent until you are proven guilty.”
Andrew Wilhoite faces up to 60 years in prison for the murder of his wife, with a pretrial hearing set for May 27th, and a jury trial in late August.
Friend and co-worker, Chris Miller, told detectives that Nikki Wilhoite was in the midst of leaving an “impossible” situation in her marriage. Millier said that Nikki Wilhoite was “in danger” and trying to leave her husband. Miller said:
“I wish she’d broken away, you know? If you’re in a bad situation, there’s help and there’s help where you can go and be anonymous. Let her life be a light for other people in a dark place. We are going to stand up and say the things that we wished she’d said.”
For Indiana Republicans, none of this seems to make a difference.
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