Report: DeKalb Sheriff suspends himself for one week as his attorneys try to stop inquiry

Posted by Dan Whisenhunt May 24, 2017

Jeff Mann, DeKalb County Sheriff

This story has been updated. 

The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that DeKalb County Sheriff has suspended himself for one week after his May 6 arrest for public indecency.

To read that story, click here.

The AJC also reported that his attorneys are asking a judge to stop an inquiry into his arrest authorized by Gov. Nathan Deal. They are seeking an emergency hearing, the AJC reported. To read that story, click here.

Decaturish has reached out to the Sheriff’s Office seeking comment. Mann and his attorneys have not responded to previous requests for comment about this story. The Sheriff’s Office did send over a copy of the memo he sent to employees:

Each day I ask the employees of the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office to perform in public and in private at the highest professional standards. Being in law enforcement, I know we are called to be model citizens and to remain mindful of keeping the public trust. As such, I cannot ask my employees to abide by a code of conduct unless I am willing to subject myself to it as well.  In fact, I must be held to an even higher standard than my employees as it relates to our Code of Conduct policy and schedule of penalties. As a dedicated public servant for nearly 25 years, I know the importance of serving with integrity. It is for this reason that I am imposing upon myself discipline under our Code.

I am disciplining myself for “conduct unbecoming,” specifically the provision defined as “engaging in conduct on or off duty which has a tendency to destroy public respect for the employee and/or the DKSO and/or destroy confidence in the operations of the County service is conduct unbecoming and is prohibited.” This self-imposed discipline should not be construed to suggest or imply guilt of the Atlanta municipal ordinance charges alleged. I will continue to vigorously defend myself as it relates to the charges. However, the mere fact of placing myself in a position to be arrested is sufficient reason for this self-imposed discipline. I cannot, in good faith, fail to take responsibility for the negative and unwanted criticism brought to this great agency and the County, and I apologize to each of you. You deserve a leader who takes responsibility for his actions.

While the schedule of penalty for this infraction (first instance) is written counseling, in my case, I am imposing the maximum time of one week’s suspension. My suspension will be effective Saturday, May 27, 2017 through Sunday, June 4, 2017.

I will donate the equivalent of one week’s pay to a charity or charities to be determined in the very near future.

I am committed to remaining your Sheriff and restoring your trust in me.

– Sheriff Jeffrey Mann

According to a police report, Mann was arrested after he was allegedly found masturbating in Piedmont Park. The report alleges he ran from an Atlanta Police officer before being apprehended. Mann’s office has said the sheriff is “working to clear these charges.”

His attorney has spoken to the media on his behalf and has apologized for the incident. Mann said he does not intend to resign, which was suggested by Terry Norris, executive director Georgia Sheriffs’ Association. Specifically, Norris said Mann should resign if he’s found guilty of the charges.

Shortly after the arrest, Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council Director of Operations Ryan Powell confirmed the agency’s investigation into the incident. The agency certifies police officers in Georgia. On May 16, Gov. Deal issued an executive order appointing Attorney General Chris Carr, Peach County Sheriff Terry Deese and Sheriff Ezell Brown of Newton County to investigate misconduct in the Sheriff’s Office.

The committee will have 30 days to complete its work. Under state law, the sheriff can be suspended for up to 90 days and the governor could request the county’s district attorney to petition the courts to have the sheriff removed.

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About Dan Whisenhunt

Dan Whisenhunt is editor and publisher of Decaturish.com. https://www.linkedin.com/in/danwhisenhunt

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