MOUNT VERNON — Tuesday at noon, Knox County Deputy Sheriff Bob Casner turned in his badge and ID card, and retired. He was hired 35 years ago, July 5 1974, by then Sheriff Ralph Peairs.
A road deputy, Casner was promoted to sergeant in 1979. He then worked as a detective, and retired as a detective in 2001. Since then, he has served as a special deputy.
Casner spoke briefly on his career, recalling how far technology has advanced. When he first started on the force, he said, deputies had no hand-held radios; funds were chronically short, and sometimes cruisers did not even have spare tires. Even getting uniforms was a problem, he said.
The careers of Knox County Sheriff David Barber and Casner have paralleled each other, and both worked as detectives at the same time. Barber tells a story of dressing Casner in a United Parcel Service uniform to deliver a package filled with hallucinogenic mushrooms to a Kenyon student.
Of the many cases Casner investigated in his career, one he recalled was looking into the cause of the fire that destroyed the Loma Linda Plant on Wooster Road.
Casner is a native of Centerburg, where he lives with his wife, Denise. They have two grown sons, Brock and Sean.