Dean faces molestation charges

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A Columbia County grand jury indicted Commissioner Scott Dean on two counts of child molestation Wednesday.

According to the indictment, Dean exposed himself and inappropriately touched one of his adopted daughters between September 2008 and October 2010.

After news of the indictment broke, Dean resigned his seat on the commission.

The state Division of Family and Children Services removed four children from Dean's Harlem home in October. The children later were returned, but Dean was required to live elsewhere and was granted only visitation rights.

Dean and his wife, Renee, have seven children, five of whom they adopted from Guatemala in 2008.

The DFCS investigation was prompted when the Deans' 17-year-old adopted daughter, Marlin, ran away from home to Mexico. However, the indictment doesn't name her as the alleged victim.

Marlin was last seen Oct. 19 near Augusta Mall. Since then, she has posted messages on Facebook defending her father.

A phone message left for Dean was not immediately returned Wednesday afternoon.

Columbia County sheriff's Capt. Steve Morris said Dean is expected to surrender to authorities this week.

A bond hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. Friday at the Evans courthouse, said District Attorney Ashley Wright.

After receiving Dean's resignation letter, commission Chairman Ron Cross said he called all other commissioners and each agreed to accept the resignation.

"Due to my family and legal issues and to allow for continued representation for the citizens, I am making the decision to resign effective immediately," Dean wrote in his letter.

"I am still confident that I will be vindicated, and I ask for the media to please allow my family the privacy that they deserve," he added.

Possible special election dates

A special election to fill Scott Dean's vacant District 4 seat could be held as early as March, according to Columbia County Elections Director Deborah Marshall.

If notification from the commission of his resignation arrives promptly, the Board of Elections might have time to meet and schedule the election for March 15 -- the next available date allowed under state law for such elections.

If the March 15 date cannot be scheduled, the next opportunity would be June 21.

Dean was re-elected last year and sworn into office in January for a new four-year term.

Comments (127) Add comment
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ghsfrshmn
2
Points
ghsfrshmn 02/02/11 - 03:26 pm
0
0
Wow. That's all I have to say

Wow. That's all I have to say about this.

storiesihaveread
358
Points
storiesihaveread 02/02/11 - 03:31 pm
0
0
IF and i am using caps this

IF and i am using caps this is true. He has commited one of the worse crimes you can against a child no matter how old that child may be. He needs to be locked away for a VERY long time. Goes to show you really do not know people as well as you do!!!

Crime Reports and Rewards TV
33
Points
Crime Reports and Rewards TV 02/02/11 - 03:53 pm
0
0
Innocent of all charges until

Innocent of all charges until convicted by a jury of his peers, in a properly conducted court of law.

usapatriot
0
Points
usapatriot 02/02/11 - 03:46 pm
0
0
The authorities took a long

The authorities took a long time to get to this point. It may not be "cut and dry". I'll wait & see.

Fiat_Lux
16200
Points
Fiat_Lux 02/02/11 - 03:57 pm
0
0
Waiting and seeing is a very

Waiting and seeing is a very good idea in a case like this. Good men have had their reputations and sometimes their lives destroyed by adolescent girls with big problems and a load of malice.

Wait and see, and hopefully the truth will come out, either to condemn Dean or exonerate him.

AWyld1
3
Points
AWyld1 02/02/11 - 03:55 pm
0
0
I know Scott and I'm curious

I know Scott and I'm curious as to why an arrest was not made before the indictment...isn't that common place? I know it doesn't happen in a lot of fraud cases but in child molestation cases you are usually arrested then indicted. I wonder what would have happened if he were a regular guy? I will not judge him til I have the facts but will say if he is guilty he should go to prison for a longggggggggggggg time.

double_standard
166
Points
double_standard 02/02/11 - 04:02 pm
0
0
This isn't a charge that's

This isn't a charge that's thrown around lightly I wonder what his response will be. There's a sick underworld of people who do these sort of things.

Farmboy
1003
Points
Farmboy 02/02/11 - 04:02 pm
0
0
Is this dude from Augusta?

Is this dude from Augusta?

bitter
0
Points
bitter 02/02/11 - 04:08 pm
0
0
"Good men have had their

"Good men have had their reputations and sometimes their lives destroyed by adolescent girls with big problems and a load of malice."

Yet, I assure you that many, many, many more adolescent girls have had their innocence and lives destroyed by grown men in positions of power over them.

AutumnLeaves
9486
Points
AutumnLeaves 02/02/11 - 04:08 pm
0
0
If he is not guilty, and if

If he is not guilty, and if anyone is guilty with maliciously making false accusations with no basis, that person or persons should be prosecuted. It is too easy to make false accusations, false arrests, etc. If he is guilty I hope justice prevails. The main thing is to find out the truth and mete justice according to law.

garydex
0
Points
garydex 02/02/11 - 04:18 pm
0
0
Another "family values"

Another "family values" Republican showing he's as sick as the next. John Q. Citizen would have been locked up back in October when the allegations were first made. His position and friends made sure he didn't have to be treated like the rest of us would under such serious charges.

LBenedict
2
Points
LBenedict 02/02/11 - 04:18 pm
0
0
"It is what it is" said his

"It is what it is" said his spokesperson not long ago.

bitter
0
Points
bitter 02/02/11 - 04:27 pm
0
0
All this talk about innocence

All this talk about innocence and false accusations:
The gentleman has been indicted by a grand jury.
The grand jury was given access to information that we, as the public, do not have access too.
They also heard testimony from witnesses in defense of Mr. Dean, and by those who have accused...which is was DFACS. The Grand Jury was not prompted by an accusation by a "teenaged girl", it was prompted by the concern of child advocates after they investigated the disappearance of Mr. Dean's teenaged daughter. She also did not begin by making wild accusations in order to remain in Mexico, she was quoted when first discovered as saying "He's a wonderful man, don't say bad things about him".
It was further questioning of the children who remained in the household, and also when Mr. Dean's text records were pulled due to a completely separate illicit relationship he was having (with a state employee, who was also a married wife of a deployed soldier) that the texts were found in question regarding his under-aged DAUGHTER.
We're not talking denunciation from a petulant spoiled child who wanted a new cell phone, they don't take four kids away from a wealthy family for that. There has to be a threat of serious injury to the children, if not physical, than pyschological. This indictment means there is some sort of proof that has been shown to the grand jury. Claiming he's probably completely innocent is naive.

dougk
3
Points
dougk 02/02/11 - 04:31 pm
0
0
Wealthy? Did I miss
Unpublished

Wealthy? Did I miss something?

Chillen
17
Points
Chillen 02/02/11 - 04:31 pm
0
0
Well this is a big duh! As I

Well this is a big duh! As I stated when this story first broke, I knew there was no way that the Dept of Family Services & the Sheriff took action against a public figure unless they had very good evidence. Apparently the grand jury agreed.

"IF" he is found guilty, he is indeed a skunk and deserves to have his reputation marred and a criminal record for life. What kind of "person" would do this to a child?!!!

easy breezy
14
Points
easy breezy 02/02/11 - 04:36 pm
0
0
So out of 7 children who was

So out of 7 children who was molested?

bitter
0
Points
bitter 02/02/11 - 04:41 pm
0
0
I would hope that would

I would hope that would remain sealed information. Those kids still live and go to school in this community. Bad enough if they were victimized by their "father" then to have what happened to them fodder for the gossip mill more then it already is.

fd1962
26
Points
fd1962 02/02/11 - 04:51 pm
0
0
AWyld1 and Garydex, you'll
Unpublished

AWyld1 and Garydex, you'll find that in these allegation cases, the decision to arrest is based upon the conclusion of the DFACS investigation whether a crime has occurred. The Sheriff's Office merely contributes to that investigation normally. Even where evidence is problematic or not sufficiently compelling for DFACS to conclude that molestation happened, the District Attorney can still present the same evidence generated to the next scheduled session of the Grand Jury, which, after deliberation, decides to return a True Bill or else a No Bill of Indictment on the evidence. A true bill of indictment automatically refers the evidence to a subsequent Superior Court Trial for decisions on guilt or innocence. It's important to note that the accused is never able to defend him or herself, or be represented by an advocate, before Grand Jury proceedings - it's strictly a prosecutorial tool.

onlysane1left
222
Points
onlysane1left 02/02/11 - 04:57 pm
0
0
Wow, if this was a RC

Wow, if this was a RC commissioner, I bet there would have been no time inbetween the charges being brought up and the time of arrest. Some people are just above the law I see.......

badboytoys
1
Points
badboytoys 02/02/11 - 05:32 pm
0
0
Funny that they never

Funny that they never mentioned about him being locked up or if he had to post a bond. The average man would be held until trial. I guess if you know people or wealthy your much different than if you were poor.
And people wonder whats wrong with this country. I guess we'll just have to see if he does another child like that before the system wakes up. Don't ya think? I say hold him in jail till trial or at least wear an ancle bracelet like any other Pedophile. He has the money to run i would consider that a flight risk. I can hear it now!!! But he was a high figure from CC we didn't think he would run.

Asitisinaug
3
Points
Asitisinaug 02/02/11 - 05:39 pm
0
0
I find a hard time believing

I find a hard time believing this but at the same time do believe in our grand jury hearings. My prayers are with the children and family.

burninater
9785
Points
burninater 02/02/11 - 05:48 pm
0
0
Quite a few people in

Quite a few people in disbelief and/or withholding judgement, in stark contrast to other suspects accused of this type of crime in the AC pages.

Must be the tie and blazer.

LBenedict
2
Points
LBenedict 02/02/11 - 05:51 pm
0
0
Can someone explain how an

Can someone explain how an indicted party can make plans to surrender? I mean, if one is indicted, then isn't s/he arrested soon thereafter?

Fiat_Lux
16200
Points
Fiat_Lux 02/02/11 - 06:00 pm
0
0
Class envy is a vile thing,

Class envy is a vile thing, and harmful. If this man is guilty of molesting a child, hopefully it will be proven. If he is not guilty of it, hopefully his reputation will be restored. Of course, that latter is unlikely. People commenting today are representative of the community at large. All that is needed to ruin someone's reputation is an accusation.

I realize that an alarming percentage of our community is exceedingly small-minded, but hope for better, more rational citizens continues nonetheless.

It's worth re-reading fd1962's 4:51 comment to get a better picture of where things actually stand.

realitycheck09
312
Points
realitycheck09 02/02/11 - 06:06 pm
0
0
Wow. I think it is hilarious

Wow. I think it is hilarious how many people on here are actually using restraint and not in a rush to judge. I'm a white guy and HATE the race card, but....

....I bet reactions would be different if this story was about Tyrone Jackson of Cherry Tree Crossing.

dougk
3
Points
dougk 02/02/11 - 06:14 pm
0
0
burniater is absolutely
Unpublished

burniater is absolutely correct. And, Fiat, it has nothing to do with class envy. I find the contrast to be astounding and appalling between the public's comments to this news report and the comments tied to stories of less "well-heeled" suspects.

burninater
9785
Points
burninater 02/02/11 - 06:15 pm
0
0
"Class envy is a vile thing,

"Class envy is a vile thing, and harmful. ... I realize that an alarming percentage of our community is exceedingly small-minded, but hope for better, more rational citizens continues nonetheless."

Yes, particularly when that rationality is extended to ALL accused of a given crime, rather than those that fit a certain, um, look. One most have a very high estimation of one's worth, in comparison to others, to view a call for consistent community response to ALL suspects, "class envy".

fd1962
26
Points
fd1962 02/02/11 - 06:15 pm
0
0
LBenedict, it may appear
Unpublished

LBenedict, it may appear inconsistent, but not unusual that citizens may be shown courtesies like this, especially if they are prominent, long-time property owners, have significant community ties, etc. Plus, if the powers-that-be anticipate that the accused can afford to mount a vigorous legal defense which likely could prevail, they will be handled with (political) deference and civility. It may also indicate that the conclusions of the DFACS investigation are not the same as the decision reached in the Grand Jury indictment. You'll have to stand by for the trial.

fd1962
26
Points
fd1962 02/02/11 - 06:31 pm
0
0
Burninator and dougk, in a
Unpublished

Burninator and dougk, in a perfect world perhaps... Class envy may not be the exact description, but our legal system is all about advantage representation - where one (unfortunately) is considered guilty until proven broke, rather than innocent until proven guilty. That's reality. You'd understand if it ever happened to you.

happychimer
19347
Points
happychimer 02/02/11 - 06:54 pm
0
0
I read the indictment and

I read the indictment and want to throw up. I hope he rots.

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