Sheriff’s appearance in TV commercial problematic for ethics board

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Monroe County Board of Ethics found Sheriff Baxter violated one provision of the county ethics code by being in an Ide Volkswagen commercial featuring his racing team and the Volkswagen Beetle the team used in a race called the Baja 1000.

The board believes it wasn’t malicious or intentional.

“The Board believes that Sheriff Baxter engaged in the TV Ad entirely in good faith, for no purpose of personal gain, with no intent to violate the provisions of the County Ethics Code nor with any knowledge that the same would or could give rise to a potential violation.”

A viewer asked us in 2022 whether the commercial was a conflict of interest. At the time, Baxter told us he’d avoid anything like that in the future.

On Tuesday he released a statement saying he has honored that commitment and will continue to do so.