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Warrants assert Jamey Noel altered records to get police pension for family

Noel is pictured at the center of the far table during a recent court hearing.
Aprile Rickert
/
LPM
New warrants were served last week in the investigation of former Clark County Sheriff Jamey Noel. Noel is pictured at the center of the far table during a recent court hearing.

Indiana State Police served three new warrants last week in the ongoing investigation of former Clark County Sheriff Jamey Noel. They include accusations that he altered documents to secure a police pension for a family member.

The most recent set of warrants in the ongoing investigation of former Clark County Sheriff Jamey Noel include a search for employment documents of a former sheriff’s office employee and relative of Noel’s. They say Noel altered documents to help get him a police pension.

Investigators also sought financial records from New Washington State Bank for Brittney Ferree, a former Clark County Council member Noel has a child with; and payments made to Duke Energy by Noel, his wife and daughter and the nonprofit he’s operated.

Fraudulent police pension documents 

Police worked with Indiana University in Bloomington to obtain employment records of former Clark County Sheriff’s Office employee Bradley Kramer.

As part of the investigation started in June, state police talked with Clark County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Mark Grube. He told police Kramer had been a jail officer when Noel took office in 2015, and had eventually started to date and eventually marry Noel’s wife’s sister within the next two years.

Grube said Kramer was promoted in 2018 to a position with the Clark County Sheriff’s Office that made him eligible for the sheriff’s office pension program. Grube told investigators Noel “intentionally altered promotion documents” and that Kramer knowingly submitted them to receive an eight-year pension at 20%, which he was not entitled to.

Grube provided pension applications from June and September 2020, and police say in the supporting document for this warrant that “a review of the records indicated many of the original reports had been altered.”

Investigators spoke to the former sheriff’s office human resources director about the two pension applications. He said he had received two sets of documents from Kramer. One appeared to be accurate, listing him as a jail officer for four years and before being promoted to a pension-level position.

The second set listed Kramer as having been promoted Jan. 1, 2015, which would have made him eligible for a 20% pension.

Investigators say Noel and Kramer declined to be interviewed.

In a March 2018 social media post, a family member of Kramer’s congratulated him on becoming a policeman and officer with the Clark County Sheriff's office.

The Clark County Sheriff's Office confirmed Kramer started Jan. 6, 2014 as a corrections officer and resigned mid 2023 as a detective sergeant. Indiana Gateway shows he made $68,981 in 2022 as a sergeant.

Investigators learned Kramer has since been hired as an officer with the Indiana University Southeast police department. They requested information from his job application packet to the university to compare with his merit deputy pension documents.

Council member approved EMS funds while in a relationship with Noel 

Indiana State Police Capt. Ron Galaviz confirmed all three of the new warrants have been served. He noted investigators worked with IU ahead of time and said they cooperated and had the records ready for police.

Previous records indicated Noel paid Ferree child support from the nonprofit funds, and police have also been investigating whether he gave her a $21,000 BMW owned by Utica Township Volunteer Firefighters Association, which does business as New Chapel EMS.

Ferree said she paid cash for the BMW in part from an insurance check received after a car accident.

On Dec. 28, police executed a warrant at Ferree’s home in Sellersburg, during which they seized her cell phone. They said it contained “numerous” text messages between Ferree and Noel, as well as screen shots of other conversations concerning the investigation. They say there were screenshots of “conversations from Ms. Ferree asking Jamey Noel how much ... would it cost for her to go away,” according to court records.

Police interviewed Ferree, who told them she had known Noel since she was a teenager and had an interest in politics independent of his influence. Ferree, a Republican, was elected to the council in 2018. She said she and Noel started a romantic relationship during her time on the council, and they had a child together.

Ferree said she accompanied Noel to New Orleans twice, while he was on trips related to the Clark County Sheriff’s Office or Utica/New Chapel.

She also admitted to approving funding bills for New Chapel while she was a council member and in a relationship with Noel.

New Chapel provides EMS service to Clark County and part of Floyd County. LPM News previously reported New Chapel took over full coverage of Clark County several years ago, entering an agreement in 2020 for $700,000 annually. That agreement was extended in April 2022 by nine months at the annual rate of $1.05 million. County officials entered a new three-year contract at this price in 2023.

Police served another warrant related to Ferree last week at New Washington State Bank in Charlestown.

Police also say a business credit card associated with New Chapel showed more than $730,000 in charges between late 2018 and late 2023, and that the "charges predominantly appear to be personal in nature."

Correction: This story has been updated to reflect that Brittney Ferree was elected to the Clark County Council in 2018.

Coverage of Southern Indiana is funded, in part, by Samtec Inc., the Hazel & Walter T. Bales Foundation, and the Caesars Foundation of Floyd County.

Aprile Rickert is LPM's Southern Indiana reporter. Email Aprile at arickert@lpm.org.