City Ink: Scott Peebles alienates his Republican supporters

What do Latasha Nicole Moore and Scott Peebles’ Repub­lican supporters have in common?


They want their votes back.

Moore claims she’s got four coming to her because she was promised a car if she’d get four people to vote for Democratic sheriff’s candidate Richard Roundtree. Many Republicans who crossed party lines to vote for Peebles and donated money, not to mention time and effort, wish they could get their votes and a refund now that Peebles has endorsed Roundtree.

Peebles’ campaign manager, Lewis Blanchard, has jumped on the Roundtree bandwagon with Peebles.

“After much thought, prayer and discussion, it is my intention to help and support Richard Roundtree in his campaign to be the next sheriff of Richmond Coun­ty,” Blanchard posted on his Face­book page Friday. “If you have not had the opportunity to hear directly from Richard, I will be hosting an event for him in the near future.”

I can’t imagine it will be the same crowd that attended the other parties Blanchard threw for Peebles. Many of them are as mad as hell.


ARE THERE ANY QUESTIONS? Pee­bles announced his support for Roundtree in a news release that ended with, “This is all I will have to say publicly about the race for sheriff. No further statements or interviews will be conducted and no further comment will be made.”

It’s just as well he didn’t hold a news conference. It would have gone something like this:

Reporter: Capt. Peebles, did Lt. Roundtree promise to promote you to major for endorsing him?

Peebles: No comment.

Reporter: Capt. Peebles, did Lt. Roundtree promise your campaign manager a job in the sheriff’s office if he’d support him, too?

Peebles: No comment.

Reporter: Capt. Peebles, if Lt. Roundtree didn’t promise you a new title for endorsing him, why didn’t you just keep quiet and not make the people who worked so hard for you want to wring your neck?

Peebles: No comment.

Reporter: Capt. Peebles, did you decide to endorse Lt. Roundtree to pay Sheriff Ronnie Strength back for not endorsing you before the primary?

Peebles: No comment.

Reporter: Capt. Peebles, now that you’ve endorsed Lt. Roundtree do you regret all those bad things you said about him before the election?

Peebles: No comment. Now that I’ve answered all of your questions, I’m going to cut this off. Thank you for coming.


DO WE BUILD ON A PLATFORM OR ON A FOUNDATION? In his written statement, Peebles said his and Roundtree’s fundamental ideas regarding the direction of law enforcement are nearly identical. Augusta Commission member Joe Bowles agreed and said anyone who supported Peebles based on his platform has no reason not to support Roundtree.

“Their platforms are identical,” he said. “The best question is, why aren’t all of Scott Peebles’ supporters lining up behind Roundtree? They both want community policing and both believe in technical advances to benefit police officers. And they both believe in a citizen advisory board.”

No, Joe, the best question is, “Would you trust this man with your wife?”

Bowles, a Republican with liber­tarian leanings or vice versa, voted for Peebles. He said he hasn’t endorsed Roundtree because he doesn’t know whether he can endorse two Democrats in one year.

“My last Democrat vote was 20 years ago when I voted for Bill Clinton,” he said.


VOTES FOR CLUNKERS: Moore told investigators that a used-car lot owner approached her at a Roundtree event and promised to give her a car if she got four other people to vote for Roundtree. She said she got four people to vote but that U Wanna Ride owner Jerry Lee Jor­dan refused to honor the supposed compact. So Moore called the law and said, “I want my vote back.” The case was turned over to the secretary of state’s office.

Jordan’s wife, Cushena, took to the airwaves to declare, “This girl is crazy,” and said she and her husband want to take lie detector tests and want Moore prosecuted. Moore also wants to take a lie detector test, so I hear. I also hear the case is more than “he said, she said,” and that the police have text messages between Jordan and Moore. I don’t know about Moore’s mental state, but she’s been to an institution quite a few times in her 23 years, that being the Richmond County jail, according to police records. The last two times were 2010, once on a charge of contributing to the delinquency of a minor and once for disorderly conduct.

There might be a credibility issue there.


DON’T MOVE THE BUS, THROW HER UNDER IT: Oh, what a surprise! Augusta’s Human Resources Depart­ment is undergoing an extreme makeover.

Dr. Malik Watkins from the Carl Vinson Institute of Govern­ment has analyzed the situation to include a survey and identified five top issues: poor customer service, unresponsiveness, lack of knowledge, lack of concern and understaffing. (Of course, what else does government always come up with to excuse sorry performance?)

Keep in mind this is the same department that investigated a disgruntled former employee’s allegations that recreation department operations manager Melinda Pearson had taken time off she wasn’t entitled to, which was one big fat lie. She had the time coming and the proof. The administration just wanted to get rid of Recreation Director Tom Beck, who signed off on her time card, and used the situation at hand to do it. She was just collateral damage.

So Deputy Director Bill Shanahan volunteered her personnel file to the media, which hadn’t even requested it, in an effort to discredit her. She was demoted to a manual labor position after 29 years with the government, where she was known as one of the hardest-working people in the recreation department.

Shortly after assuming her new duties, which included laying tile, bricks, climbing ladders and painting, she was injured on the job, which exacerbated a serious neck injury that had sidelined her for eight months in 2004. She got a good lawyer and filed for workers’ compensation, which made them mad.


ANOTHER HATCHET JOB: Now in an effort to further discredit Pearson, someone leaked one page of her workers’ compensation application to a TV reporter, who went on air last week waving it around and suggesting she’s guilty of workers’ compensation fraud. The reporter had shown the document to Bowles, who said from what he was looking at somebody made an error or “flat out tried to cover something up.”

The next day, Bowles called the news story “bogus.”

“Based on what I’ve heard from lawyer Jack Batson today, he’s looking at one page of documents, and that’s not the entire story,” Bowles said. “Based on the paperwork, Melinda Pearson did absolutely nothing wrong. Somebody did something wrong. I predicated everything I said by that one page he showed me. It’s another hatchet job by the media.”

So why hasn’t City Ad­min­is­trator Fred Russell stepped up and notified the TV station that it has aired bogus information damaging to Pearson and clear her name instead of letting the segment run over and over? Because he also commented on air about the application, why hasn’t he gone on air to personally repudiate the allegations?


BUT CAN WE REMEMBER IN NOVEMBER: Ernie and I went to see the movie 2016: Obama’s America. Everybody in the theater was older than dirt. When we got out, Ernie said it was like watching a movie on a tour bus. He said he kept expecting his hair to turn blue.