Washington, Georgia Candidate for Mayor, Angela Booker Addresses Past Arrest Allegations.

Published on 18 October 2023 at 00:26

In a Facebook comment on Saturday, the same day the article regarding two lawsuits he was involved in was published, Washington Mayoral Candidate, Bruce Bailey, made a recommendation to citizens of Washington to follow a Facebook page that was created that same day.  He stated "there's a new page we've found, go find it.  It's all legal documents, open records and people are working hard to get the TRUTH out." The Washington Wilkes Informer was mentioned many times on the page as a source in "misinformation," Bailey also repeatedly referred to the Washington Wilkes Informer as a source of misinformation and having been unfair to him in the interview conducted last week. Bailey has repeatedly said how important it is citizens research the candidates. He went on to say the "info is easy to find. City, County attorneys are all willing to hand it over." On the page, which originally displayed a photo of mayoral candidate Ken Parris in the profile, but which has been removed (it is a violation of Facebook policy to impersonate someone else), there are photos of Ken Parris, Angela Booker, District 1 candidate Maceo Mahoney and District 2 candidate Kimberly Cork with many negative accusations and claims. It is unknown who manages the page as it is under a pseudonym. It is also unknown who the "people" are that Bailey mentions are working hard to find these allegations as they are never named. 

One of the photos claimed to be "public record information found in a split second" but with no explanation of what the document is, appears to be a blurry photo of a computer screen displaying a document pertaining to a legal case involving Parris. I  found this case two weeks ago and reviewed. The case involved Parris' right to replace a sewer line on his property in Atlanta that partially ran under the ground of a neighbor. The document is a temporary restraining order that was granted to prevent access to the property until the case was settled. The judge ruled Parris did have the right to replace the pipe, however when the repair was in process, the neighbors took the new pipe and equipment and dumped them in a landfill. Parris was requesting to be reimbursed for the cost of the pipe and he was ultimately granted that reimbursement. I didn't feel that was newsworthy so didn't report on it.

I have been, since last week, in process of accessing documents regarding Parris' contract with the city in the past when he owned a company called Persimmon Homes. I had originally requested the documents from Jerry deBin and was told to request them from the Payroll Development Authority. I was not told to request if from city and county attorneys as Bailey had stated they are willing to "hand it over." I sent a request via the website contact form but never heard back. I again, emailed deBin stating I had not heard back and was told to contact County Commissioner Sam Moore. Today I finally spoke to someone at the courthouse and made a formal request, per the form they told me is required to be filled out, for the documents and will have supervised access to view them this week.  I will report on what I discover. I am one person who voluntarily investigates and reports what I find. I search reputable sources for legal documents and review them. The lawsuit cases that involved Bailey and were reported on last week, took a great deal of time because they involved court trials and thousands of documents to review. The documents regarding Parris' contract with the city are not available online.


I have extended the opportunity for the candidates to respond to accusations as I extended the opportunity for Bailey to respond to the lawsuits I reported on. 


 Angela Booker, formerly a home parent educator for JumpStart and currently a consultant, has provided the following statement regarding what appeared to be a photograph of a mugshot that has been circulated:


In 2016 I was in a business partnership and an ACH payment was made for $2200. The payment did not clear my bank initially and because it was ultimately submitted again and cleared the bank,  I didn’t think there was an issue. I was not aware of a warrant out for my arrest regarding non-payment but a few months later, I was arrested at my home and charged with check fraud. I chose to pay the $2200 rather than the $3500-$4500 I would have had to pay for an attorney to fight the charge. This was my first and only offense of this nature and the only time I have been arrested.


Ultimately, the business experienced financial decline due to my own personal health issues and did not succeed. Bankruptcy was ultimately filed. This was disappointing as it would be to any business owner. I don’t make excuses for it. It is not indicative of how I manage my finances now. I view financial responsibility as a high priority and share what I have learned with others who are just starting to learn to manage their finances. I keep a personal budget and adhere to it. As I know where every penny of my money is spent, I will adhere to the same diligence as a steward of the city of Washington.


My original investigation into candidates did not reveal this arrest because I searched Georgia records. I was not aware of Booker having lived in South Carolina where the charges occurred. I am not aware of any other states candidates may have lived. Candidates are not required to list past residences on qualifying documents. 


Reported by Michelle Chaffee

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