Columbus City Councilman faces court hearing

A Columbus City Council member is facing a misdemeanor charge of public indecency.

Councilman Dascal Bunch, 61, of Brooks Street in Columbus, has been ordered to appear in court on April 4th for his initial hearing on the Class C misdemeanor charge.

Prosecutor Bill Nash said he has requested a special prosecutor in the case because they are both Republicans and Nash has a long-time association with Bunch, including Bunch volunteering to plant yard signs for Nash during Nash’s first run for office. Nash, reached Saturday morning, said that without access to his office files, he could not recall which prosecutor’s office had been tapped to handle the case.

Few details are available because the county courthouse is closed for the weekend. But a court record obtained through the court’s online record system shows that a probable cause affidavit, which lays out the details of the charges against Bunch, was filed on March 17th and the court date set on March 18th. Bunch has been ordered to appear in Superior Court II before Judge Kitty Coriden on Monday, April 4th.

No arrest warrant is in the Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department’s system and Nash said that is normal in misdemeanor cases. Bunch has not been arrested, according to the court system.

Lt. Matt Harris, spokesman for the Columbus Police Department, said officers were called to Bunch’s Brooks Street home in late 2011 on a neighbor’s report of indecent exposure, but the charge could not be substantiated and no charges were filed at the time.

Nash said that because Bunch has worked as a reserve deputy for the sheriff’s department in the past that such a case would normally be turned over to an outside agency for investigation, such as the Indiana State Police, but he did not have the records at hand over the weekend to verify which agency investigated.

Indiana State Police could not be reached for comment.

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

Court documents for electronic record system