Bleckley County sheriff, accused of assaulting judge, on mission trip | news

UPDATE (CBS46) — CBS46 investigative reporter Rachel Polansky spoke to the Bleckley County Sheriff’s Office on Thursday afternoon and was read this statement:

Bleckley County Sheriffs Office is aware of the outstanding warrant regarding Sheriff Coody. Sheriff Coody is currently participating in a church-sponsored mission trip outside of the state of Georgia, that has been scheduled for nearly a year. Sheriff Coody has been a law enforcement officer for more than two decades and has tremendous respect for our court system. He’s taking these allegations seriously and will meet with the appropriate authorities as soon as he returns. The Bleckley county sheriffs office has always and will continue to believe in complete transparency- However, will not comment any further on these pending criminal charges, to allow the investigation to continue without interference. Sheriff Coody will provide more information at a later date, as he is able to do so.

When asked about Coody’s return date, CBS46 was told that they do not know when he will return.

CBS46 Investigates also dug into Coody’s history.

According to records from Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council (POST), Coody worked for the Georgia State Patrol from 1988 until 2007, when he was terminated. A case summary details two allegations of “improper conduct” including a “domestic dispute” between Sheriff Coody and a friend. According to agency documentation, “The argument became a pushing and shoving match and it escalated in volume and violence.”

The same case summary also indicates that Sheriff Coody allegedly allowed a 12-year-old girl to drive his patrol cruiser. According to agency documentation, “An independent witness confirmed seeing the child driving the patrol unit on the highway while this officer’s brother rode in the passenger’s seat of the marked vehicle.”

Coody’s certification was put on probation for 2 years after that. He also had to take an anger management course. Meanwhile, he worked for Bleckley County Sheriff’s Office between 2007 and 2008. He was a peace officer with the Georgia Department of Agriculture from 2008 to 2011. He went back to Bleckley County Sheriff’s Office in 2011, where he stayed. And in 2017, he was elected Sheriff.

ORIGINAL STORY BELOW


ATLANTA (CBS46) — A sheriff from central Georgia is wanted for sexual battery in Cobb County.

The Cobb County Police Department says it was alerted to an alleged sexual battery that occurred on the evening of Jan. 18 at the Renaissance Atlanta Waverly.

After a thorough investigation, CCPD says an judgment warrant was issued on Jan. 28 for Sheriff Kristopher Coody, the current sheriff of Bleckley County. Coody is not in custody at this time.

According to the warrant, Coody made intentional physical contact with intimate parts of the victim’s body, when he allegedly placed his hand on the breast of the victim without her consent.

The victim, who is a prominent judge, spoke with CBS46 and acknowledged the details of the incident, but said it was important to let the legal process continue as the case remains under investigation.

The victim said the alleged incident took place at a sheriff’s convention that was hosted at the hotel.

Due to the nature of the alleged crime, CBS46 has decided not to name the victim.

The investigation is ongoing. CBS46 will continue to update this story as we gather more information.

The Georgia Sheriff’s Association has released the following statement:

The members of the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association are aware of an incident of reported misdemeanor sexual battery that has resulted in a warrant being issued in Cobb County for the judgment of Sheriff Kristopher Coody of Bleckley County. The reported incident occurred after hours during the time of a scheduled annual training event not planned or sponsored by the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association.

The Association has no firsthand knowledge of the facts surrounding the reported incident and directs all incident related questions to the investigating agency.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story reported that Sheriff Coody was in custody. He has not been arrested at this time.

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