(04/12/2002)
Kanawha County special prosecutor Rob Schulenberg says he cannot comment on the status of a case reportedly being prepared against former Calhoun Magistrate Steve Johnson. Johnson resigned last October after alleged improprieties surfaced in his office accounts.

No charges have been filed against Johnson since the issue surfaced about seven months ago.

"I am not at liberty to talk about it," said Schulenberg, whose appointment was requested by Judge Thomas Evans III, after Calhoun prosecutor Tony Morgan filed papers to recuse himself from the case.

Speculation indicates Johnson may enter into a plea bargain arrangement rather than face a possible indictment.

Evans asked the West Virginia Supreme Court to investigate Johnson, and court appointed auditors have spent numerous days auditing Johnson's accounts in Grantsville at the Calhoun courthouse.

Johnson, a well-liked community member, tendered his resignation and moved to South Carolina.

A Calhoun County grand jury is convening on May 15.


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