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Douglas County officials, employee, and contractor indicted in bid rigging scheme


A grand jury returned indictments Friday against two of Douglas County’s elected county commissioners – plus the elected tax commissioner. Two others connected to the case were also indicted.

Indicted were Douglas County Chairwoman Romona Jackson Jones, Douglas County Commissioner Henry Mitchell, Douglas County Tax Commissioner Greg Baker, former Purchasing Director Bill Peacock, and Anthony Knight, owner of S&A Express.

All defendants are charged with Conspiracy in Restraint of Free and Open Competition in Transactions. The indictments are related to a contract awarded to S&A Express for professional janitorial services for the Douglas County Annex Building.

The Attorney General’s Prosecution Division presented evidence to a Douglas County Grand Jury, resulting in the indictment of all five defendants. The indictment charges each of the defendants with one count of Conspiracy in Restraint of Free and Open Competition in Transactions.

Douglas County Chairwoman Romona Jackson Jones has also been charged with the following one count of false statements.

Attorney General Chris Carr issued a statement on the indictments saying, “Those who work for the taxpayers of Georgia are expected to uphold high ethical standards and to perform their duties in an honest and transparent manner,” . “Whether an elected official or employee, anyone who breaks this trust will be held accountable for their actions. We take these allegations very seriously, and we look forward to presenting our case in court.”

This investigation was conducted by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI).

GBI Director Mike Register said, “The GBI continues to work for the citizens of Georgia in being an impartial investigatory agency in the investigation of suspected public corruption,” “The GBI works in coordination with other partners, such as the Attorney General, to ensure any defendants’ due process is protected while also ensuring criminal acts are prosecuted.”

As with any allegation of wrongdoing, indictments contain only allegations against the individual against whom the indictment is sought. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty, and it will be the government’s burden at trial to prove the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of the allegations contained in the indictment.

A copy of the indictment can be found here . No further information about the investigation or the indictment has been released at this time.

In 2018, Douglas County commissioners took bids to clean the auto tag office building used by Douglas County Tax Commissioner Greg Baker. The county awarded the bid to a janitorial service called S&A Express.

A grand jury said there’s evidence the contract was awarded after three elected officials rigged the bidding process. The grand jury accuses Baker – plus county commissioner Henry Mitchell III and county commission chairman Romona Jackson Jones of conspiracy to rig the janitorial contract.  It says, “the accused, after reviewing the bids, caused S&A Express’ bid to be exactly the same as the lowest bid” submitted by other contractors.  The indictment also accuses chairman Jones of lying to investigators when asked about when she signed the janitorial contract.

Douglas County Administrator David Corbin released a statement about the indictment saying, “It is important to remember that an indictment is just an allegation, and that those indicted are entitled to a presumption of innocence. These allegations should not distract from the outstanding accomplishments that we have had in moving this county forward.” 

Saying that Jones looks forward to challenging the allegations in court, her attorney released a statement that the chairman “vehemently denies the allegations in the indictment and strongly proclaims her innocence.”

A bid rigging conviction could result in up to five years in prison.


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