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DeKalb spokesman resigns after calling N.J. cop shooting ‘murder’



DeKalb County’s chief communications officer resigned today, a few days after making news by declaring a police shooting in Newark, N.J., to be “murder.”

In her resignation letter, Shelia Trappier Edwards made no mention of the New Jersey incident. She said she wanted to return to the private sector “and this is an appropriate time for me to pursue new endeavors.”

Last Thursday, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution quoted Edwards as she went off on deputies in Essex County, N.J., who said Gwinnett County businessman DeFarra “Dean” Gaymon was shot and killed after he attacked an undercover detective. She said Gaymon was a college classmate of hers and that his family members were the ones who characterized the incident as a murder.

Edwards’ statements stirred resentment among some DeKalb police officers who questioned whether she could objectively represent their interests in a police-involved shooting here.

Previously, Edwards was perhaps best known for tangling with WGCL-TV reporter Wendy Saltzman as she tried to do an ambush interview with Edwards’ boss, DeKalb CEO Burrell Ellis.

Edwards came to work for DeKalb in 2009 after serving with CEO-elect Ellis’ transition team.

Today’s resignation letter made special note of Edwards’ work with DeKalb public safety officials:

DeKalb has some of the finest officers who are well trained and are highly effective in the roles that they perform each day. Our most recent project in conjunction with the Public Safety department, Marquel’s Pledge, promises to be one that will provide DeKalb with state and national attention as a model for reducing celebratory gunfire in local communities.


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5 Responses to “DeKalb spokesman resigns after calling N.J. cop shooting ‘murder’”

  1. Need Integrity says:

    Shelia Edwards was an embarrassment to DeKalb County. Why did CEO Burrell Ellis hire such an unprofessional and unqualified communication officer?
    We want to thank Shelia Edwards for resigning! However, we proclaim that Edwards should have never been hired for the job.

  2. Progressive Dem says:

    Edwards worked for Kevin Ross, who was the campaign consultant Ellis used in the election. After she was hired as communications director, she was a pipeline right back to Ross. Ross guided Ellis through Edwards, and Ross probably made Edwards look competent. Ross has been Ellis most trusted advisor. Unfortunately his Atlanta-centric connections has led to some hires of senior management without DeKalb knowledge and a very slooooow start. Ross seems to be more about building and solidfying his power base than the policy outcomes in DeKalb. He has also used his contacts and influence in the Ellis administration to parlay a consulting contract for the GM site.

    And what has the Ellis administration accomplished?

  3. Stephanie Trappier sister of Shelia Edwards Trappier says:

    As I read these comments about Shelia, I wonder who really is the incompetent one. Is it Shelia and her feeling compassion about the fact that someones life was lost and that there could be some type of cover up about this persons death or is it the people making these hateful remarks about her. It is still a shock to me that people like you would take the issue of someone loosing their life to attack someones character for the way they feel about that situation. Shelia’s work history and successes speaks for itself. She does not have to justify the comments of such ignorant and uncaring persons such as yourselves with any type of remark, but knowing her as I do, I feel obligated to do that on her behalf. I guess the old saying that until it happens to you, then you can’t understand how someone feels. Well I hope that you people who feel so reluctant to see this shooting for what its worth don’t ever have to experience what this killing of another African American man is doing to his family. Don’t continue to be simple minded people. Your attack of Shelia has no merit. A life was taken, regardless of how it happened it did. Who’s at fault is left for the courts to decide, but until that happens I do believe that we are still free to voice our oppinions without being attack personally. In conclusion, my personal feeling about these comments is that I feel that because of her accomplishments and because of the fact that she herself is African American and that she is held in such high regards has stuck in some of your scraws and the only way you feel you can get it out is to verbily attack her. My advice to you is SUCK IT UP! IT IS WHAT IT IS! I gaurantee that none of those empty and vicious words will ever stop her from being the outstanding person she has proven herself to be time and time again. Check her creditials, if you don’t have a clue. After reading such crap evidently you don’t. One last thing, I also read something about integrity. Shelia has shown more integrity for the stand she has taken more than any of you and if you simple minded people don’t realize that then I would advise you to pick up a dictionary and see what the definition of integrity is.

  4. Stephanie Trappier sister of Shelia Edwards Trappier says:

    Here I am again. Surprisingly none of these accusations came up about Kevin Ross until the killing of Mr. Ellis and the resignation of Shelia Trappier Edwards. Are you people for real. Just reading such garbage makes me wonder what kind of world you people who made those outlandish comments could be living in. You couldn’t attack these three incompetent people before this incident.? WHY? If you felt so strongly about Mr. Ellis and Mr. Ross and Mrs. Edwards and their incompotency and lack of integrity, why take now to come out and attack them like this when this whole issue is about nothing that you are claiming in your comments. I wonder what is really going on. Well only you with all the integrity and the most competent ones know because I am certainly clueless or is it you who does not have a clue? inquiring minds want to know.

  5. Stephanie Trappier sister of Shelia Edwards Trappier says:

    I want to apologize for a clerical mistake I made earlier in my comment. I mistakenly said the killing of Mr. Ellis when it should have said the killing of Mr. Gaymon. Please except my apologizes for the slip of the fingers. Once again I apologize. Thank You!