Ethics Hearing Gets Heated, Ends Quickly - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Ethics Hearing Against Savannah Mayor Gets Heated, Ends Quickly

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SAVANNAH, GA -

The ethics of Savannah Mayor Edna Jackson came under fire Thursday. Click here to view the complaint.

A commission was supposed to hear both sides, but this hearing turned out to be a short one.

A half hour.

That's all the time it took for today's ethics hearing to end, and John Perry to storm out of the room.

Perry claims that Mayor Jackson asked for his personal information, Including photo ID and a cell phone number when he made an open records request.

He claims she then shared it with Alderman Tony Thomas, who was the subject of the request.

He also says the mayor tried to "intimidate" him, making him meet with her personally.

Less than a half hour after the hearing started it ended without Perry giving his evidence, just saying "you will hear from my lawyer."  

The ethics committee had no choice but to dismiss the complaint.

"If anyone that knows me knows that no matter what some may say," explained Mayor Jackson. "I still try to maintain the professionalism that this office must present and we also must follow the law."

Perry may have left without saying much this morning, but this afternoon he had a lot to say to News 3.   

He gave news 3 a document -- from Georgia's Assistant Attorney General Stefan Ritter, which was also sent to Mayor Jackson.  

It says in part.

"I agree with you that the open records act does not require a citizen to meet with an elected official as a condition to reviewing documents, nor does the act require a disclosure of a home address, telephone number, driver's license or investigator's license to do so. The mayor's office may have overstepped its authority if it required that information."

But perry says that's not what city attorneys said in the hearing.  

He says he may have no choice but to sue the city.

"I called the Assistant City Attorney a liar and I stand by that because what she is saying is there is no provision in the law and essentially that the attorney general also violates the law every time they have an open records request," said John Perry. "Well the Mayor lied to me. Its not that I think she lied to me or I'm accusing her or I'm alleging she lied. I'll play you the tape where she tells me one thing and does another thing."     

Perry said he contacted the Georgia Attorney General's office, he was told they will investigate today's hearing.  

We will keep you updated.

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