Barton County sheriff pleads not guilty to mistreatment

Barton County Sheriff Brian J. Bellendir. (KSN Photo)

GREAT BEND, Kan. (AP) – A central Kansas sheriff who’s accused of striking a handcuffed man has pleaded not guilty to a misdemeanor.

The Great Bend Tribune reports that Barton County Sheriff Brian Bellendir entered the plea last week through his attorney to the charge of mistreatment of a confined person.

The charge, which was filed last month by a special prosecutor, alleges that Bellendir spoke in a “vulgar, rude and/or angry manner” to a man after he was booked into jail in August on a probation violation charge. Bellendir also is accused of striking the man on the side of the head.

The sheriff was issued a summons in October after an investigation by Kansas Bureau of Investigation agents. Bellendir later issued a statement noting he was still on the job.

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