The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

February 14, 2013

Charges dropped against county deputy

BY BRIAN L. HUCHEL
Commercial-News

URBANA — Charges of DUI against a Vermilion County deputy were dropped Wednesday in Champaign County Circuit Court.

Sgt. James “Nick” Beddow was charged in February 2012 with driving under the influence of alcohol following a traffic stop.

After almost a year of Beddow contesting the charge against him, the DUI count was dismissed Wednesday on a motion by Champaign County Assistant State’s Attorney Elizabeth Dornik.

Beddow has worked for the sheriff’s department for 24 years. He was off-duty when he was stopped by a Champaign County deputy the night of Jan. 8, 2012, near the corner of University and Broadway in Urbana.

A traffic charge of disregarding a traffic control light still is pending in the case. A hearing on that charge is set for later this month, according to the Champaign County Circuit Clerk’s Office.

Vermilion County Sheriff Pat Hartshorn said Beddow — aside from a period in which his license was suspended as a result of the DUI charge — has been on the job with no change of duties since the charges were filed.

Because the state’s attorney dismissed the charge, Hartshorn said Beddow will face no punishment for violating department rules or regulations.