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SOUTH BEND – District attorneys on Wednesday dropped all charges against a South Bend City Council candidate who was accused of domestic violence against his 15-year-old daughter.

The St. Joseph County District Attorney’s Office last August charged Roosevelt Stewart, the Republican candidate for District 2 in the 2023 municipal election, with two counts of domestic violence after his daughter allegedly told police her father had hit and choked her during an argument, according to an affidavit. Officers with the South Bend Police Department reported “significant swelling of her upper lip and bleeding from her nose,” the affidavit states, and she was taken to the hospital.

On Wednesday, however, prosecutors dropped the charges, according to spokeswoman Brandi Miller. However, she said, “because this is a special victim case, we cannot comment on the reasons for this decision.”

Judge Elizabeth Hurley dismissed the charges without prejudice, meaning prosecutors can still file new charges. Her decision followed a pretrial conference Wednesday morning attended by prosecutors and Stewart’s defense attorney, Tom Dixon. A jury trial had been scheduled for Aug. 1.

Stewart denied the allegations in an October interview with The Tribune, saying his daughter made up the story to get his attention and get him out of the race. He continued to campaign but lost a landslide victory in November to Democrat Ophelia Gooden-Rodgers, whose party won all nine seats on the City Council.

Dixon, Stewart’s attorney, said his client has always denied that the alleged assault occurred. Stewart did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday afternoon.

“When kids don’t get their way, they make things up,” Stewart told The Tribune in October. “That’s not true. … My baby doesn’t want me to run for office.”

Email South Bend Tribune city reporter Jordan Smith at [email protected]. Follow him on X: @jordantsmith09

This article originally appeared in the South Bend Tribune: Judge dismisses domestic violence charges against South Bend candidate