Ralph David Abernathy III
1999: Abernathy went to prison for 15 months for stealing $5,700 through false expense vouchers and offering an aide $2,700 to lie about it to the GBI. After his release, he went back for 11 more months for bilking two women of $35,000 by promising to win their loved ones’ release from prison.
1998: Alerted by a drug-sniffing dog, customs officials caught Abernathy with a quarter-ounce of marijuana in his underpants as he returned from Jamaica. He was fined $500.
1994: A state employee said Abernathy followed her into the women’s restroom, entered the stall she was using and refused to leave. The Senate Ethics Committee refused to investigate.
Today: Abernathy, now an ordained minister, is active in efforts to build a museum honoring his late father, once the head of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. He has struggled with tax problems, with liens for $74,482 for state and federal income taxes on the books.