August 31, 2012

AJC: Feds looking into Murray County arrest

From Staff Reports

— The U.S. Justice Department is involved in the investigation of the arrest of a woman who accused a Murray County judge of soliciting her for sexual favors, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Thursday.

According to the AJC, “John Horn, the first assistant U.S. attorney in Atlanta, declined comment when asked about the federal investigation. But The Atlanta Journal-Constitution confirmed federal interest in the arrest with law enforcement sources. Their names are being withheld because they are not authorized to speak publicly about the case.”

Atlanta defense attorney Don Samuel told the newspaper, “If federal prosecutors are looking at the case, it means obstruction of justice and civil rights charges could be forthcoming.”

Deputy Josh Greeson was fired by Sheriff Howard Ensley after Ensley said he was presented evidence in a meeting on Wednesday with District Attorney Bert Poston and Jerry Scott, special agent in charge with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, that Greeson and Capt. Michael Henderson had made false statements to the GBI during its investigation into the arrest of Angela Garmley on a methamphetamine charge. That charge was later dismissed. The arrest followed a traffic stop in which Greeson found a magnetized metal can underneath Garmley’s car that he said contained meth.

Garmley had previously accused former chief magistrate Bryant Cochran of using his power as a judge to solicit her for sexual favors, which Cochran has denied. Cochran resigned during a Judicial Qualifications Commission investigation of Garmley’s claims and claims that Cochran had pre-signed warrants. Cochran has acknowledged pre-signing some warrants. The GBI is also investigating Cochran’s actions.

Both Greeson and Henderson — a cousin of Cochran, according to Henderson’s attorney, Larry Stagg — were on paid administrative leave. Ensley said he fired Greeson after learning of the evidence in the meeting. Ensley said Henderson’s paid administrative leave will be up today, at which time Ensley said he will “deal with him.”