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Supremes: Statesboro must pay citizens’ legal fees for Open Meetings challenge

September 12, 2011 --

Good news for open government advocates: The Georgia Supreme Court today upheld a lower court’s assessment of legal fees to citizens who challeged closed meetings held by the Statesboro City Council. The ruling comes after the council met in secret last year to discuss eliminating the jobs of the city’s police and fire chiefs.

Ex-Dawson County court clerk admits stealing $120K

Ex-Dawson County court clerk admits stealing $120K
June 17, 2011 --

Dawson County’s longtime court clerk admitted today to stealing $120,000 of court funds from 2006 through 2009. Becky McCord, 62, faces up to 10 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to federal tax evasion and bankruptcy fraud.

Doraville lawyer who won’t quit gets 3-year suspension

January 10, 2011 --

The Georgia Supreme Court today ordered a 3-year suspension for an attorney who refused to stop appealing a client’s conviction and his own disciplinary action. The court’s order lays out a 10-year chain of court battles over a client’s $400 fine and 3-day jail sentence. The court found Arthur F. Millard’s actions showed “a basic disrespect of the attorney-client relationship and … needlessly subjected his client to liability, after she made clear that she no longer desired his services.”

Fulton judge orders hearing to open courthouse access

Fulton judge orders hearing to open courthouse access
April 27, 2010 --

Fulton County’s top judge, Doris L. Downs, has had enough of the tediously long lines to get into the courthouse, and she’s ordered the sheriff to explain why he can’t fix it.

3rd mountain judge resigns; Ralston’s law partner appointed

3rd mountain judge resigns; Ralston's law partner appointed
April 19, 2010 --

They’re opening a new can of judges in the Georgia mountains, where three jurists have quit in four months. One of the new judges is House Speaker David Ralston’s law partner. Another will replace Mountain Circuit Superior Court Judge James Cornwell, who stepped down Friday. The governor reported Cornwell’s resignation to the state agency that looks into charges of judicial misconduct.