Ken Hodges for AG? Let’s Hope Not

Thanks to the intrepid reporters at the Albany Herald, former Albany DA Ken Hodges is “99% sure” he’ll run for Attorney General here in Georgia. Oh joy.  I say this because Ken Hodges currently is under a lawsuit regarding the infamous “Phoebe Factoids” case.  Mr. Hodges is currently implicated in a lawsuit by Mr. Charles Rehberg.

Mr. Rehberg alleges that Mr. Hodges targeted him for his part in the infamous “Phoebe Factoid” faxes that were sent out in 2003.  In all honesty, this is unique in that most District Attorneys operate under a sort of immunity while in office except for specific things.  One of those things is professional misconduct.  Judge Louis Sands allowed it to continue.

For those who don’t know the allegations against Mr. Hodges, let me lay them out for you.  In 2003, a set of anonymous faxes were made to businesses all over town called the “Phoebe Factoids”.  These alleged various abuses by Phoebe Putney Hospital.  Mr. Hodges allegedly used the power of his office to subpoena the BellSouth phone records, using specifically a 2003 grand jury, to uncover the originator of the factoids.

Now, using a grand jury to subpoena phone records is nothing new.  But what’s really original is what Mr. Hodges allegedly did with those records.  He is alleged to have handed them over to Phoebe.  As Dana Carvey’s “Church Lady” character would say, “isn’t that special?”  And, say they say on commercials, “but wait, there’s more.”

Mr. Rehberg was then charged with 6 counts of harassing phone calls, one count of aggravated assault, and one count of burglary.  Of course, since the supposed “harassing phone calls” were to businesses and the office of Congressman Sanford Bishop (who was supposedly “surprised” to find he was a victim) which can’t really receive harassing phone calls,  and the home he was alleged to have broken into was a home he’s never been to (it was also the site of the alleged aggravated assault), all charges were dropped.

Now, Mr. Rehberg wants to clear his name.  Ken Hodges, on the other hand, wants to move onto bigger and better things…like being able to do the same things at the state level?  I mean, if he can’t accept Mr. Rehberg’s right to free speech here in the Dougherty County Judicial Circuit, then what will he do with the much larger state budget?  Let’s hope we don’t find out.

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40 Responses

  1. Have you seen Judge Louis Sands 3/31/2009 Order Denying Hodges’ Motion to Dismiss (case number: 1:07-CV-22 (WLS))?

    This Order should be mandatory reading for all voters. Hodges really abused the voters’ trust here.

  2. You’re absolutely correct Jack. I’m glad the Judge denied the motion, because this one NEEDS to see trial. While Mr. Hodges may indeed be innocent of all charges, the court will decide that in due course I hope. And, if he is indeed guilty, which current evidence does indeed support, then I hope he is hammered by way of punishment.

    Abuses of power are far to common these days, and those who are caught need to be made an example of.

  3. Your observations about Ken Hodges hit the nail on the head. His failure to follow the law, coupled with his total lack of respect for our constitutional right to free speech, are sufficient reasons to make sure he never assumes a higher position–certainly not that of Georgia Attorney General.

    I hope Charles Rehberg is able to get this case in front of a jury, and teach this corn-pone Nifong a lesson.

  4. Galdys, I think you’re correct in your assessment of Mr. Hodges, but his day in court will satisfy justice. Not just for Mr. Rehberg, but also for the citizens of the Dougherty Judicial Circuit.

  5. Ken is an excellent Attorney and Prosecutor. I am sure he will be acquitted of these ridiculous charges! The people of Dougherty County were lucky to have someone so dedicated – I sure do miss him.

  6. Lauren, For Mr. Hodges sake, I hope you’re right. However, I disagree about how good of a prosecutor he actually was. I remember Bill Scheer’s murder trial, and how he failed to get a conviction after putting Mr. Scheer through so much…and I actually agree that Mr. Scheer was probably guilty. He was one of my teachers in high school after all, and I thought he was going to murder a few of us. ;)

    Ken Hodges’ guilt or innocence on these charges will become apparent soon enough. However, if true, then I sincerely hope he is penalized to the fullest extent of the law. I’ve heard for some time about the abuses of office Mr. Hodges committed, though THESE are public record and hence the only reason they were included, so I will do everything I can to KEEP Ken Hodges out of the AG office.

  7. […] SWGA Politics will have more on this story once I get some coffee in me, but for now see this WALB article or this earlier post on SWGA Politics, ‘Ken Hodges for AG? Let’s Hope Not‘ […]

  8. It disturbs me that Mr. Hodges could soon become the most powerful law enforcement official in Georgia.
    His father served as defense attorney in a wrongful death lawsuit. The lawsuit went against Hodges’ father and the plaintiffs were awarded a sum of money. A few years later, Mr. Hodges prosecuted a plaintiff in that lawsuit. He had that person thrown into Southwestern State Hospital during the week of Christmas and then threatened that person when he questioned Mr. Hodges’ actions. He also smeared the “criminal defendant” on WALB and in The Albany Journal.
    Mr. Hodges didn’t see his involvement in that case as a conflict of interest. He believes he is above the law and beyond good and evil.
    The case in question was dropped after Mr. Hodges had his fun. The person involved was not convicted, but his good name will be ruined the rest of his life.
    Please don’t use my full name because I understand how truly dangerous Mr. Hodges is. Thank you.

  9. Charles,

    I wasn’t familiar with the case in question, however I don’t doubt it. This man may be one of the most dangerous people possible to run for AG.

  10. Tom,
    Also keep in mind that about the same time as Phoebe received the grand jury information, the hospital hired a close female relative of Hodges’ as a public relations person. A quid pro quo situation if there ever was one. I just can’t understand how such dealings aren’t subject to investigation by the current Attorney General.
    Then late last year Channel 10’s management ran an editorial praising Hodges for his years of wonderful service as D.A. Let’s just say it reminds me of Joseph Goebbels and leave it at that.
    Charles

  11. It’s my understanding that Ken Hodges and the current AG are good friends, which could explain why there was no investigation. Either that, or the AG preferred to wait and see what came out of some of the other stuff,

  12. Charles, the “close female relative” was his wife!! Then, he quits as DA to work for Phoebe’s law firm. And Channel 10 is where his wife worked prior to Phoebe….and you think “quid pro quo.” I can’t possibly imagine why….

  13. Wow….your blog is getting hotter than fish grease. I forgot about that whole Phoebe business but would he announce the AG run if there was any real issues there.

    Maybe, he was reading those Michael Meyer von Bremen op-eds in the Albany Herald and decided he needed to get in the race before the former senator.

  14. Slyram: With all due respect to Judge Gray, who I’ve known for ages , I’m not entirely sure that he’s right. Hodges has been trying to get the case thrown out claiming immunity because he was a DA at the time. Judge Gray wasn’t a judge in the case, so he’s having to go on gut feelings for the most part, which can easily be wrong. The facts of the case, I think, will show that Ken Hodges abused his authority.

    Now, as for jumping in the race before Meyer von Bremen, THAT I can believe. Michael Meyer von Bremen has always struck me as a very intelligent and capable person with a great deal of integrity.

  15. I think Ken is a great candidate – the lawsuit has not played out in court and so the “facts” remain to be verified. We need tough, fair-minded person like Ken in the Attorney General position. He put a lot of convicted criminals away as our DA. He defended Phoebe’s right to provide quality health care treatment to indigent people throughout SW GA. That’s what this latest lawsuit is really about – another venue for “Phoebe-phobes” to harass. If you boil it down one more level, it is about racist hatred toward blacks and any person or institution who treats them fairly. Ken was a leader for the black community – e.g. King Day activities.

  16. I personally have never had an issue with Ken Hodges involvement with the black community. Truth be told, it’s sad that we still have to divide in any way, shape, or form as far as “community” is concerned.

    That said, I vehemently disagree with you on almost everything you’ve said Roger. I’m very interested in how Phoebe’s right to practice health care throughout Southwest Georgia needed defending, since they have blocked Palmyra’s ability to compete in regards to labor and delivery services among other things.

    Phoebe has run rampant throughout the area, buying up property which pays zero property taxes and getting preferential treatment from the city. When the Phoebe Factoids came out, Phoebe could have either ignored them or stepped up their PR machine to drown them out. But they didn’t. Ken Hodges went after the originators in what was clearly not a criminal matter.

    While Mr. Hodges did prosecute a lot of criminals in Dougherty County, and should be commended for that if nothing else, it’s hardly worthy of more than a “thank you”. Personally, I think it’s arrogant to try and campaign on the Attorney General’s office under this current cloud of doubt, but it’s definitely his right. It’s also my right to use whatever venues available to me to let my voice be heard.

  17. […] GA by a commenter who was, let’s just say “critical” of my feelings towards Ken Hodges.  Obviously, it’s this person’s right to say such things, despite it being wrong (he […]

  18. Judging from a previous poster, I suppose now that you can’t criticize the content of Ken Hodges’ character. You will be called “racist” even though he’s white!
    Do you suppose that Hodges, like Obama, will now hide behind the issue of race? You are a “racist” if you question a politician’s ethics and policies?
    This P.C. stuff makes me sick. It is used to protect elected officials who are incompetent and even outright corrupt … and to immunize them against any criticism. They are above reproach, you see.
    Charles

  19. Charles,

    Never fear. We will comment on Mr. Hodges, for better or worse, for as long as we need to. I don’t care what ken Hodges did on his off time in regards to King Day activities. After all, Michael Moore is a lifetime member of the NRA yet filmed Bowling for Columbine which attacked the NRA. One’s activities don’t tell you a thing about their character. It’s what they do when they think they can get away with something that does.

    So far, I feel that Ken Hodges has failed that test. The courts will decide that for certain though, and I’m hopeful that justice will be served.

  20. Ken Hodges consistently abused his power during his tenure as Dougherty County District Attorney. His misconduct in turning over private phone records as a favor to his Phoebe pals is just the tip of the iceberg.

    If a concerned citizen dared to bring him information that would embarrass his cronies (much less expose possible criminal activities), Hodges GAVE the information to his cronies and their attorneys and launched a vendetta against the person who turned to him for help.

    Hodges’ hit list has included (along with Rehberg and Bagnato), Woody Hart, Beth McKenzie (former executive director of Open Arms), Alice Robinson (Southwest Georgian newspaper and former employee of the DA’s office), and David Maschke, the Dougherty County School Board Chairman. There are many, many more.

    Hodges is photogenic. He’s charismatic. He’s intelligent.

    He is also arrogant. He is deceitful. He’s ambitious. He upholds neither the letter of the law nor the spirit of the law; instead, he uses his knowledge of the law to benefit himself and his friends — at the expense of everyone else.

    As for putting away criminals, it is no secret that during most of his career as DA, Hodges was far too busy resume-building and concentrating on his personal agenda to prosecute suspects. His ADAs did the work. Hodges showed up for the photo ops.

    Someone somewhere described Hodges as Southwest Georgia’s Nifong. I agree … with one caveat: Hodges is more ambitious and less honorable than Nifong.

    I sincerely hope that people will recognize what lurks beneath Hodges’ smooth talk and polished looks: a vain, vindictive and self-serving politician who used the District Attorney’s Office as his private fiefdom and hopes to do the same with the State Attorney General’s Office.

  21. Not to worry T. Ruth. We here at SWGA Politics have no intention of letting Hodges and his allies quiet us down. ;)

  22. I would love to read the lawsuit, can you post it here? I would think this stuff would all be public records.

    I have heard that the lawsuit is based upon sworn testimony from various D.A. office staff. Ken Hodges might be able to to skirt this kind of stuff with the local press, but the state-wide press is going to have a field day with this if he is determined to be a viable candidate for A.G.

    Last of all, has a bar complaint been filed against Ken Hodges yet? Can a member of the general public do so?

  23. Just went in and deleted a reference to Judge Gray in Hubert’s comment (and slyram’s earlier comment that I missed), and also changed ‘Lauren Grays’ name from ‘Lauren Gray’ to ‘Lauren’ to make it clear that this person is NOT Judge Gray.

    People, please do not try to mislead others. Use pseudonyms as much as you want, but if you try to adopt the name of a real person, particularly an elected official, know that I will do my best to verify that said comment came from said person, and if not I will take action against that comment/poster. I’ll edit the comment/post name the first time, and if it continues I will block your IP. I don’t want to discourage comments, I actually want to do all that I can to ENCOURAGE them. But I also want to encourage politicians at all levels to both talk to us and read our articles here at SWGA Politics, and I will do what I can to ensure that everything is as accurate as possible.

    Thank you for reading SWGA Politics, and I hope you continue to read and comment! :)

  24. Jeff,

    Rest assured we all appreciate that clarification!

    Posting the lawsuit documents in question, if possible, would be a great public service to all engaged in this debate and interested in the outcome of the AG race.

    Hugh

  25. Hugh,

    I’ll see what I can find on this lawsuit, but I can’t make any promises. Right now we’re focusing on getting the site moved tomorrow morning, so that will take up a fair amount of my time. However, I’ll see what I can find and post it as soon as possible.

  26. I did several Google searches, and did manage to turn up a pdf copy of the complaint filed in federal court against Ken Hodges and the other parties involved. You can read it here:

    http://tinyurl.com/ken-hodges

    The complaint is long, very detailed, and extremely interesting to read. It does seem to be based on sworn depositions of the various parties, including investigators employed in the Dougherty DAs office. I would love to see the other filings in this case. Enjoy!

  27. Mr Hodges personally stood in front of the grand jury holding a file stating that he had in his hand a signed confession. On Hodges word the grand jury indited a
    young businessman and has since destroyed his business and his life. The DA’s office now knows it was all a lie but they can not account for the funds that they took from the businessman bank account or for some of the equiptment that was confiscated. The DA’s office is telling the young man that if he will agree not to sue them, Ken Hodges and Dougherty Co they will “drop” their charges against him. Gee thanks now that he is bankrupt and his business name ruined.

  28. Who would have thought that a federal civil complaint would be detailed–that is exactly what is required in all complaints. All of these comments are hilarious hearsay. T.S. Eliot wrote, quite incisively, that “between the Idea and the Reality . . . Falls the Shadow.” You are all in the shadow.

  29. Peggy: There is plenty of anecdotal evidence out there about Ken Hodges abuse. Unfortunately, there’s plenty of people who can share their own stories.

    Informed: It’s funny that you call it hearsay, because it is. But hilarious? I’m afraid not. Just come on over to our new site at http://swgapolitics.com and keep an eye out. Trust me, I have a feeling that an upcoming story will be enlightening, to say the least.

  30. The mere credibility of the ones you refer to “plenty of people who can share their own stories”, is pathetic. Most often the people who have stories are ones on the wrong side of the law…..ones in trouble and lash out at any form of justice or one’s that enforce it.

    Ken Hodges was the best thing that ever happened to Albany. His office ran like a well-oiled machine. What do you think ADA’s are there to do….. “assistant” would be the key word. They are there to ASSIST. Ken hired many competent and as we read in the lawsuit against him, many unappreciative employees. He did the best job any DA in Albany has or ever will do.

    If you have a chip on your shoulder regarding Mr. Hodges, you may want to take a long, hard look at yourself. He was and is for what’s RIGHT! If you or your friend were ever a target, it was because you were in some way, shape, or form…..doing WRONG! Regardless of whether he got the conviction…. you obviously weren’t keeping your nose clean!

  31. KeJo
    What about my sister who was killed by someone who should not have been driving but Ken wouldn’t prosecute because it wouldn’t be helpful to his political ambitions. What did she do WRONG?
    Ken Hodges is a lying SOB and I’ll do anything I can to keep him out of office.

  32. Hodges is an ambitious thug. He breaks all the laws he wants but he wants and gets away with it. The most that jerk ever did in office was to raid curb stores for illegal poker machines or selling beer to minors. He cannot win a real case. He only did the raids whenever he was getting bad press. Heard he likes the white powder too. Ask old Andy.

  33. Everything Hodges did/does is only to better his own position. He is a very ambitious man. He is a millionaire, he does not need money, he wants power to go with that inheritence of his.

  34. Kejo, you are clueless. The man used his power, wealth and influence to help out his buddies and himself. He would find a way to frame Jesus for some crime if he thought it would help him. Well oiled machine? Damn right oiled with money, back room deals and dirty tricks. He is what is so wrong with this country. We need honest decent people in office, toss the good ole boys out! If only we could really get rid of the bad politicians and get back to the kind of America our forefathers invisioned.

  35. […] announced the possibility, see this WALB article or this earlier post on SWGA Politics, ‘Ken Hodges for AG? Let’s Hope Not‘ Tags: Attorney General, Ken Hodges April 22, 2009 – 4:34 am Posted in 2010 Campaigns […]

  36. What are some good news articles from his time at Dougherty that you can recommend? I can go back and read articles from the Albany paper online here at school. I came across some articles linked from the Ken Hodges wikipedia page and found some more with seraches but he doesn’t seem to be as crooked as most people say. A politician like all the rest? Yes. But not crooked.

  37. Ken was not a leader as far as I am concerned in the black community. Just because the he put his name and face on the horse and pony show they call MLK celebration in Albany does not make him a leader in our community. He is the worse thing that could happen to our entire state.

  38. I totally agree with T. Ruth. Valerie P is wrong about this man is not a crook. He has the media in Albany in his corner and they are the most biased group of folks I ever saw. I put the Albany media in the same boat as Fox Network.

  39. […] This article (2009) reports that this Ken Hodges was going to perhaps run for Attorney General of Georgia.  Great.   Read the account here (it’s the entire post): […]

  40. Hi! I’ve been reading your blog for a long time now and finally got the bravery to go ahead and give you a shout out from Kingwood Texas! Just wanted to mention keep up the great work!

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