Indiana Man Accused of Murdering Wife Wins Republican Primary While in Jail
Andrew Wilhoite, who was arrested in March in connection with the death of his wife, Elizabeth "Nikki" Wilhoite, recently won a local Republican primary election from jail.
Andrew was charged with felony murder after allegedly hitting his wife in the head "with a blunt object causing her to lose consciousness," according to Indiana State Police.
The 41-year-old Indiana resident then drove to a nearby creek and "dumped her body," according to reports. The Boone County Coroners Office has ruled her death a "homicide."
Nevertheless, Andrew, who is currently behind bars in Boone County Jail, advanced May 3 in the Republican primary election for township board.
Election results show he received 60 out of the total 276 votes cast for Republican candidates. The other two candidates received 110 and 106 votes respectively. There were only three candidates in the race.
According to Indiana law, Andrew is legally allowed to run, but will be disqualified from being a candidate if he is convicted by "jury trial," "bench trial" or if he "pleads guilty."
"There is no legal reason he can’t be a candidate," Brad King, co-director of the bipartisan Indiana Election Division said, according to the Washington Post. "Under our system, you are innocent until you are proven guilty. If a person is convicted of a felony, then they are no longer eligible to be a candidate and are ineligible to hold office."
"Our hope is that he asks to be removed from the ballot and we can just replace him," Boone County Republican Chairwoman Debbie Ottinger added. "But I don’t know if anyone has talked to him about that."
Andrew's jury trial is scheduled to begin in late August, and has the option of removing himself from the ballot before July 15, 2022.