Mt. Vernon mayor files suit to stop former mayor from running again

MT. VERNON, Ky. (WKYT) - Clarice Kirby, former Mt. Vernon mayor and convicted felon, announced earlier this year she is running for mayor, again. This follows a felony conviction of abuse of public trust back in 2009. After her time served, she received a 'Restoration of Rights' from Governor Beshear saying she could vote and hold office.

The current mayor, Mike Bryant, filed suit claiming her 'Restoration of Rights' did not cover her felony conviction.

In today's court hearing, Bryant's attorney said there is a stipulation, saying abuse of public trust prohibits you from holding office-- for life, which, Bryant's attorney said, overrides Kirby's Restoration of Rights.

Kirby's attorney disagrees and said the governor gave her back the right to hold office. He read the document to the court.

But Mayor Bryant's attorney argued it was a "partial" pardon. He says a "full pardon" would be a different story. "Practically speaking, Restoration of Rights are much more common than they used to be because they don't grant all the complete restorations that a full pardon does," said Attorney Jeremy Bartley. "There is less contemplation than a full pardon would have."

"He's worried I'm going to beat him or he wouldn't have filed this," Kirby said after the hearing. She says she will appeal if the judge's decision isn't in her favor.

The judge said he would make a timely decision because he realizes there could be appeals with a looming November election. The judge said he will have a decision in seven days.

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