Tennessee House of Representatives candidate Kristopher Gore has been arrested and charged with passing worthless checks – one of them for over $10,000, making it a felony.
Gore was taken into custody late Thursday afternoon. According to Sheriff Jackie Matheny, the 43rd District Democratic candidate made arrangements to be picked up after hearing of the charges and was taken into custody without incident. He was later freed under $20,000 bond after being booked into Warren County Jail.
Gore stands charged with passing three worthless checks. Two of the checks were written to Custom Vinyl Signs for campaign signs. The two checks totaled nearly $15,000. A third check, also written to the owner of Custom Vinyl, but intended to be a charitable donation, was written to Meals on Wheels and is for less than $500.
When contacted by the Standard on Friday, Gore had no comment. He said his attorney would provide a statement at a later date.
His arrest for worthless checks comes as he was competing against two fellow Warren countians for the Democratic nomination for state representative. The 43rd District includes all of White and Grundy counties and about two-thirds of Warren County.
The hot check counts come despite claims by the Gore campaign last month that it had raised over $50,000. The contributions included over $10,000 from Gore himself along with major donations from supporters, some family members, in Putnam and Knox counties.
According to election administrator Donna Yates, the arrest will not affect Gore’s status on the August Primary ballot. His arraignment before General Sessions Judge Bill Locke is June 10. Yates said the ballots have already been finalized so even if Gore was found guilty of a felony, he could not be taken off the ballot. He would not be allowed to serve in the legislature if he has a felony on his record.
Gore moved to Warren County a few years ago after serving in the armed forced. He tested the waters for a run for Warren County executive briefly before opting to throw his hat into the ring in the race for state representative.
The spot he is seeking is the office long held by Charles Curtiss, who resigned Jan. 1 to take a job in the private sector.