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Year in review

By Kay S. Pedrotti Both Superior Court and Magistrate Court underwent changes in judges in 2010, with resignations under fire and state investigators involved. Magistrate court was the first target of GBI probes, resulting in the forced resignation of magistrate judge Priscilla Killingsworth. She was later replaced by Marcia Callaway-Ingram. Griffin Judicial Circuit superior judges Johnnie L. Caldwell and Paschal A. English Jr. resigned as the Georgia Judicial Qualifications Commission investigated charges of improper conduct by both judges. It was later determined by the circuit’s public defender’s office that while a sexual relationship between English and a female public defender had been proven, the judge showed no favoritism in his decisions. A local attorney serving as chair of the Public Defenders Council, Mack Crawford, was appointed a superior court judge. The failure of First National Bank, and subsequent rescue by United Bank, was one of the county’s reflections of a sinking economy. State and federal budget cuts to schools, road maintenance, health agencies and other local entities forced millage increases and new fees from both the school board and county commission. Fire fees were later dropped by the commission.

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