News |   Obits |   Sports |   Business |   Opinion |   Things to Do |   Life |   Blogs |   Photos |   Video |   Data |   Jobs |   Homes |   Autos |   Buy/Sell


Crime & Courts

Richmond Co. | Columbia Co. | Aiken Co. |

Special prosecutor named in commissioner's domestic violence case

Friday, Feb. 3, 2012 4:37 PM
Last updated Saturday, Feb. 4, 2012 4:26 AM
  • Follow Crime & courts

An Atlanta lawyer for the Prosecuting Attorneys Council of Georgia has been named special prosecutor in the domestic violence case against Augusta Commission member Alvin Mason.

The office of state Attorney General Sam Olens reported Friday that Joe Burford is prosecuting the case against Mason. Burford serves as director of the attorneys council’s state prosecution support division.

Mason was charged Dec. 27 with family violence battery after his wife told Richmond County sheriff’s deputies that the commissioner had grabbed her by the throat and pushed her against the wall Dec. 23.

The Richmond County prosecutor who normally would handle domestic violence cases, State Court Solicitor Charles Evans, asked last month to recuse his office from handling the case because the commission sets its budget.

Augusta lawyer Freddie Sanders, who is representing Mason, said Friday that he believes Mason has a good defense.

“I just think it was a family disturbance that didn’t rise to the level of battery,” Sanders said. “These are just sad situations.”

Sanders and Olens’ office said the case will be tried in Augusta unless someone requests it be moved. No Richmond County State Court judges have recused themselves from hearing the case, Sanders said.

With the Prosecuting Attorneys Council, which helps prosecutors across the state, Burford has assisted district attorneys in death penalty cases and prosecuted a Georgia judge accused of election fraud, according to news reports. His office could not be reached for comment Friday.

Mason is serving his second term as commissioner and has previously reported he has considered a run for mayor.

He is scheduled to be arraigned March 29.

Comments (13) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
Craig Spinks
817
Points
Craig Spinks 02/04/12 - 03:02 am
0
0
Cuzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz/ The

Cuzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz/ The Kid,

What do you make of this?

copperhead
1035
Points
copperhead 02/04/12 - 06:38 am
0
0
I'll bet he will be aquitted!

I'll bet he will be aquitted!

seenitB4
81877
Points
seenitB4 02/04/12 - 07:49 am
0
0
Well at least he has a good

Well at least he has a good lawyer....Hi Freddie...long time-no see...I can still see ya in that cute little mustang...:)

Riverman1
79691
Points
Riverman1 02/04/12 - 09:26 am
0
0
Seems like a lot of money

Seems like a lot of money being spent to me. Whatever happened to the time when the cop went to the door, asked the lady if she were okay, said y'all cut that out and went on his way? Now we've got special prosecutors being flown in from Harvard Law School or somewhere, lawyers making statements and the newspaper running stories like Mason is up for the death penalty.

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 02/04/12 - 09:33 am
0
0
This story broke like

This story broke like lightning and I, like some, got judgemental pretty quick. I based it on the fact that the alledged victim perceived a situation occurred involving her spouse putting his hands on her in such a way that a call to 911 was warranted. If this is not accurate then I blame misinformation being made public. But I believe that's what occurred.

Going forward, I speculate she will expound that the call was made by her in a hysterical state and her explanation of what happened was not comprehensive. After the incident is put into clearer context, the judge will find that there was no criminality in the defendant's actions.

Well, so much for not being prematurely judgemental. But that's how i sees it.

tanbaby
1293
Points
tanbaby 02/04/12 - 09:33 am
0
0
something i'm sure to cost
Unpublished

something i'm sure to cost the taxpayers money....they will find a way to stick it to us no matter what...

Riverman1
79691
Points
Riverman1 02/04/12 - 10:19 am
0
0
DavidP, after reading your

DavidP, after reading your thorough analysis, I still say, "Y'all cut that out," would have been a better way.

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 02/04/12 - 10:35 am
0
0
agreed. in hindsight, a much

agreed. in hindsight, a much better means to the same end.

Abbynoll
282
Points
Abbynoll 02/04/12 - 02:19 pm
0
0
"Y'all cut that out" ...

"Y'all cut that out" ... really? And if this were a much worse case and a few years down the road the wife decided she couldn't take anymore because he never "cut that out" and took matters into her own hands, what would you say then? There is a reason a hard stance is taken on family violence. Personally, I believe a much harder stance should be taken.

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 02/04/12 - 05:53 pm
0
0
if a crime occurred then yes

if a crime occurred then yes indeedly doodly. but innocent until proven guilty applies to all, Mason included.

Willow Bailey
20580
Points
Willow Bailey 02/04/12 - 08:09 pm
0
0
It sounds more like typical

It sounds more like typical family dysfunction stepped up a notch or two. I would say the interest in it is purely politically motivated.

Riverman1
79691
Points
Riverman1 02/05/12 - 09:23 am
0
0
Abbynoll, the thing is the

Abbynoll, the thing is the police officer would have made sure no one was hurt and told them to stop the fighting. That's not allowing wife abuse for many years. In the circumstance I proposed the wife would have felt very comfortable calling the police again if there were a problem. Give the officer some credit. It's an example of community policing when you empower the officer this way.

Abbynoll
282
Points
Abbynoll 02/05/12 - 12:43 pm
0
0
"That's not allowing wife

"That's not allowing wife abuse for many years." How do we know that? How do we know this was the first or will be the last time? The LEO has to make a decision then, and right then, based on what he observes. If he felt the warrant was necessary, then there had to be ample probable cause. I have not seen her injuries, but the charge of battery means there was "substantial physical injury" to the victim. "Substantial" is the only difference between Simple Battery and Battery. So, there was obviously some sort of evidence to justify a warrant being issued in this case. Clearly, none of us know precisely what happened but based on the charge I'd have to say this is more than a shoving match or hair pulling.

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 02/06/12 - 12:55 pm
0
0
If the rumors are true, then

If the rumors are true, then she will clarify that she didn't realize in the hysteria, that Mr. Mason was trying to seperate her and another individual who were fighting or about to throw down. She will now explain that he had his hands on her and caused injury but it wasn't done with intent. It was a consequence of his attempt to stop them from hurting each other. again, rumor but I might take a bet that will be the long and short of it.

Back to Top

Top headlines

Property tax jump OK'd

Augusta commissioners broke a seven-year trend Wednesday and agreed 7-0 to raise property taxes by 1.75 mills to cover a deficit and provide employees a small bonus.
Search Augusta jobs