Assistant campaign's to take boss' job in November election

By Marshanna Hester

July 9, 2012 Updated Jul 9, 2012 at 10:45 PM CDT

EAST PEORIA, Ill. -- A November election candidate goes head-to-head against his boss for the job of Knox County State's Attorney.

Erik Gibson is currently the assistant state's attorney in Knox County. He's worked in the office for four years under the guidance of his boss, John Pepmeyer.

Gibson said he's grateful to Pepmeyer for the opportunities to work on big cases.

But the 30-year-old Gibson said it's time for new ideas, such as a diversionary or second chance program, like the one implemented in McLean County.

"I think that's something we can look at bringing to Knox County too," he said. "A diversionary program that first time non-violent offenders, and if the situation is right, sees a board of their peers, of the community, that would determine whether they'd be fit for something that would allow them to evade having that felony or serious crime going on their record."

Gibson will run as an independent in the November election.

Pepmeyer is a democrat and was appointed to the post in January 2007. He ran unopposed in 2008 for his first elected term.

We reached out to Pepmeyer for comment, but did not get a response.