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Monday, February 20, 2012

County Spokesman Was Laid Off, Not Fired, Following DUI Arrest

Posted By on Mon, Feb 20, 2012 at 2:00 PM

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Back in December, right before Christmas, Cuyahoga County spokesman John Kohlstrand got busted on a DUI charge. His BAC was 0.162.

If you'll remember, there were a handful of county workers in the past two years who lost their jobs or came under intense media scrutiny after driving over the limit, and subsequently being under arrest.

So it was no surprise when Kohlstrand went silent; he was put on leave by the county immediately after the news broke.

But he was not fired, according to the PD's Michael McIntyre.

FitzGerald said Kohlstrand was dropped because the communications office is being reorganized.

"He wasn't fired for a cause," FitzGerald said. "He was laid off because his position at that level anyway is not going to exist anymore. He was not going to be part of our plans for the department on a going-forward basis. That decision was made in November."

Kohlstrand, who can collect unemployment benefits because he was laid off, had this to say to the PD when reached for comment: "I made a serious mistake, and I feel terrible about it. I can't change the decision I made that night, but I can make better decisions in the future. That's my focus right now."

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