Georgia’s Judicial Qualifications Commission got the bulk of a hefty budget cut restored for 2011, but it will lose its longtime director, former Rockdale County District Attorney Cheryl Fisher Custer. She declined comment on whether her departure is linked to criticism of her $82,560 salary for part-time work. “It’s just time to move on,” she said.
Kasim Reed hasn’t even been sworn in as Atlanta’s next mayor, but one of his key supporters has already been promoted. Scott Kreher, the police sergeant who was on desk duty four months ago for talking about wanting to tenderize the mayor’s head with a baseball bat, is now a lieutenant. Kreher runs the Atlanta police union, which endorsed Reed two weeks before he won a Dec. 1 runoff election.
Federal prosecutors announced action in two unrelated Ponzi schemes this afternoon: Former McDonough attorney Steven H. Ballard, 53, was sent to prison for five-plus years for a scam that netted more than $1 million, and former Hoschton mortgage broker Edward William Farley, 47, pleaded guilty to fraud charges involving more than 150 victims and $20 million in losses. Farley will be sentenced in February. Read the news releases…
Former House Speaker Terry Coleman left elective office three years ago, but he says he still can’t close out his campaign fund until he can unload property given as restitution for embezzlement by a former employee. Former staffer Candice Lynn Sheffield pleaded guilty to theft in 2007 and agreed to pay $173,257 in restitution. She gave his campaign an 11-acre tract in Henry County to settle the debt, but Coleman had to pay back taxes on the land in May or risk foreclosure. Coleman disclosed the tax payments last week.
Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard complained this week about judges releasing accused murderers on bond, after one allegedly shot a second victim in the face. He listed 45 defendants and wanted to know how they could return to the streets while awaiting trial. But jail records show four of the defendants are not accused of murder. A few others remain locked up. And the man responsible for releasing two of the suspects was … Paul Howard.
News release from the U.S. Attorney in Atlanta: STEVEN H. BALLARD, 53, of McDonough, Georgia pleaded guilty today in federal district court to committing a real estate investment scam that lasted over five and a half years and defrauded over a dozen victims in Georgia, Florida and Tennessee.
Today, Atlanta City Council members may decide just how far they want to go with independent oversight of their police force. It’s only a work session. But the council’s Public Safety Committee has set aside two whole hours to address a standoff between police officials and a civilian review board that wants access to internal […]
May 11 — Congressman Sanford Bishop’s stepdaughter did not report income that is the subject of a GBI investigation in Columbus, DeKalb County court records show. Aayesha Owens Reese and her husband were paid a total of $14,850 since 2007 by the Junior Marshal program of Muscogee County Marshal Greg Countryman, according to published reports. […]