ATLANTA - Several metro Atlanta groups are calling for the resignation of DeKalb County Sheriff Jeff Mann in the wake of his arrest on charges of indecency and obstruction of justice.
Sheriff Mann has made it clear he has no plans to step down after his Saturday night arrest in Piedmont Park, but members of the New Order National Human Rights Organization hand-delivered a letter to the Sheriff's Office Wednesday hoping to add some pressure.
“We're asking him to resign immediately. The pressure is going to be coming within 24 hours because this unacceptable,” said New Order President Gerald Rose.
Atlanta police charged Mann with indecency and obstruction for allegedly exposing himself in an area of the park known for sex activity after dark and for running a quarter of a mile from the officer who spotted him.
“Whatever you did, that's really your personal life. But you have a public job, an important job, a high position as a Sheriff, you're setting a bad example and you need to resign,” Rose said Wednesday before delivering the letter to the Sheriff's reception desk.
FOX 5 News obtained the letter Peach County Sheriff Terry Deese sent to Governor Nathan Deal Tuesday on behalf of the Georgia Sheriff's Association. In it, Sheriff Deese asked the governor to immediately appoint a committee of two sheriff's and the attorney general to investigate the pending criminal charges against Mann.
Wednesday, Sheriff Deese told FOX 5's Portia Bruner he was concerned about the allegation that Mann refused to obey a lawful command by running from the officer after the Atlanta police patrolman yelled “Stop!” and identified himself as a law enforcement officer.
“The conduct alleged is shocking, but what we're concerned about is fleeing from an officer. That's the one thing we always tell people to do is to follow an officer's orders. And running through traffic put the officer's life in danger. We're held to a higher standard and we should be,” the Peach County Sheriff said.
Members of NewOrder just delivered letter calling on Sheriff Jeff Mann to resign. Gov's office is reviewing request to investigate incident. pic.twitter.com/46wrUW9lVM— Portia Bruner (@PortiaFOX5) May 10, 2017
Sheriff Deese said his counterparts in Peach, Gilmer, Putnam, Decatur, and Walker Counties voted unanimously to send the letter.
“If these allegations are true, his credibility is tarnished and so is the badge,” said Deese, who said he was associated with Mann at GSA Conferences.
If Governor Deal appoints the committee, members would have 30 days to report the findings of their investigation back to the governor’s office.
“You can't choose to be a police officer by day and go to strange places at night. I think it's just best that he resigns at this point.” Deese said.