Allen County Commissioner Jim Talkington resigned Friday afternoon after being confronted by Commission Chairman Tom Williams with allegations of inappropriate contact with a young woman.
The 21-year-old woman, who wishes to remain anonymous, and Williams met with Register staff Friday morning.
“First off, I owe you an apology,” Williams said to the woman and her father, who was also at the meeting, adding he had heard of similar instances involving Talkington as long as four years ago. “So, in a way, I kind of feel responsible it’s still continuing.”
At the meeting, Williams reviewed the online communications between Talkington and the woman through the Facebook messaging site that occurred over the span of one week beginning Feb. 6.
Talkington had invited her to be his Facebook friend. In scrolling through the texts, Williams said Talkington displayed “proverbial predator behavior.”
FELLOW Commissioner Jerry Daniels said he supported Williams’s decision to ask for Talkington to resign.
“It was a good decision,” Daniels said Friday afternoon.
Talkington, 56, told the Register that he preferred the reason for his resignation be termed as “personal.”
The young woman said she has never been with Talkington, but knew of him because of his position as a county commissioner. Their paths crossed through his role as a broadcaster of high school athletics over KIKS radio station.
Station owners Monica and Tom Norris earlier this week said Talkington will no longer broadcast for the station.
Williams said Talkington’s behavior “would be grounds for dismissal in a business environment,” and that “I would let a deputy go for doing something like this.” Williams is a former Allen County sheriff.
Williams said he had known of three other women simiarly approached by Talkington.
By Friday afternoon, the Register was made aware of a total of five women who had been approached by Talkington.
The other victims were of similar age, Williams said.
WILLIAMS said he felt justified in asking for Talkington’s resignation because his conduct “reflects poorly on the county and the citizens of Allen County,” and that “I felt a duty to solve the issue on behalf of the citizens of Allen County.”
Commissioner Daniels said, “I want to assure everyone in the county that I and Chairman Williams will continue with county business and move forward and seek a replacement,” for Talkington.
The next step is for members of the Allen County Republican Committee, of which Talkington is chairman, to nominate a replacement to fulfill the remainder of his term.The governor acts on the nomination.
Talkington, a second-term county commissioner, was most recently elected in 2016. His term runs through 2020.