What is the Character of the Character Witnesses?

During the recent child molestation trial of Former District Four Commissioner Scott Dean, two character witnesses came forward to testify as to the fine character of Dean. Remember the “Sexting” scandal last year where a married Dean sent many, many, many text messages to a married female county employee? Remember this female employee’s husband was a member of the military and deployed overseas? We would be hard pressed to testify as to the moral character of anyone guilty of this act. Does everyone feel this way? Apparently not.

Mr. Bob Newkirk, a Harlem area resident, was one of those people who spoke highly of Dean during the trial.  Mr. Newkirk was appointed by Dean to the Columbia County Planning Commission, and, in spite of what Columbia County News Times “reporter” Barry paschal says, one of Mr. Newkirk’s most notable acts was to make a motion before the Planning Commission to approve the plat for Magnolia Trace. (The motion was seconded by Mr. Jim Cox who was appointed to the Planning Commission by Ron Cross. We have talked about Cox before and will talk about him again as soon as someone requests his services for their campaign.)  Someone needs to ask Mr. Newkirk about his employment status, as we hear his previous bosses have a habit of asking him to leave. Current District Four Commissioner Bill Morris, here is your chance to show you aren’t under the spell of Cross. Replace Newkirk immediately with your own appointment.

Georgia State Representative Ben (Two Poles) Harbin was also quick to testify on behalf of Dean. Seems like we have mentioned Harbin before too! Remember his late night driving escapades? Who was that woman and why was she there?  And for that matter, what was Ben Harbin doing there so late at night?  Don’t forget Harbin’s connections to Magnolia Trace.  Wait until you find out who surveyed the property…….”two” times.

Our opinion of Newkirk’s and Harbin’s character is not very good.

Meanwhile, remain patient, as we anticipate things in Columbia County will liven up quite a bit after Dean’s sentencing on January 27th.



One thought on “What is the Character of the Character Witnesses?

  1. Dear Viewpoint,

    In the interest of full disclosure, on August 19, 2011, Columbia County Planning and Zoning reviewed a Preliminary Plat for a development titled “Magnolia Trace”. The narrative in the summary and recommendation read as follows: Magnolia Trace, L.P. seeks preliminary plat approval for 52 lots to be created on 15.0 acres located off Old Ferry Road. The property is zoned R-3 (Single Family Residential). The average lot size will be 7,700 square feet. The property setbacks are 10′ side, 10′ rear and 50′ from the center line of the roadway. This property will be served with county water and sewer. This property will have a Community Building and sidewalks throughout the subdivision. Staff recommended approval.

    From the meeting minutes, ” Chairperson Garniewicz wanted clarification that the community building mentioned in the summary is a clubhouse. Mr. Fort stated that was correct, a clubhouse/sales office”.

    This submittal was not a public hearing and we had no additional information on the project, as no representative was present for questioning.

    The property was zoned R-3 in 1979 and details on what type of project Magnolia Trace actually was emerged in late November 2011, over three months after the motion you accurately described above was made and seconded by me. Please note that Planning and Zoning is only a recommending body and our votes are not binding.

    I’m sorry that I disappointed you by not being able to predict the future.

    Jim Cox
    Vice-Chair Columbia County Planning and Zoning

    Posted by Jim Cox | January 26, 2012, 6:44 pm

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