Overstreet returns to Superior Court bench with win

 

J. Carlisle Overstreet won another four years on the Superior Court bench Tuesday night.

His victory extends an already lengthy 20-year tenure as judge in the judicial circuit composed of Richmond, Columbia and Burke counties. Overstreet won 73 percent of the votes.

It was the first election for challenger Willie Saunders, a Juvenile Court judge, who finished with 27 percent of the votes.

Neither could be reached for comment Tuesday night.

Overstreet, 67, practiced law for 20 years before taking a post as municipal judge for the city of Augusta. He was elected judge
in 1992 and chief of the judicial circuit in 2008 when Chief Judge William Fleming retired.

The election between Saunders and Over­street was tainted by questions about Saunders’ eligibility to run for office because of a bankruptcy debt.

The formal complaint was dismissed by Secretary of State Brian Kemp, who ruled that Saunders’ plan to pay the $159,000 in back taxes qualified him to run.

Saunders, 42, said before the election that he would not seek another term as Juvenile Court judge in September so that he could focus on his private practice.

 

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