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Judge considering a new trial for Scott Dean

Posted: October 4, 2013 - 4:30pm  |  Updated: October 4, 2013 - 4:41pm
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Former Columbia County Commissioner Scott Dean smiles at his family as he enters the courtroom for a hearing before Judge Blanchard requesting a retrial. Dean was convicted of child molestation of his adopted daughter but she later told a DEFACS worker that she lied about her accusations and sent a letter to Scott Dean's attorney stating that she lied.  Photo by Jim Blaylock
Photo by Jim Blaylock
Former Columbia County Commissioner Scott Dean smiles at his family as he enters the courtroom for a hearing before Judge Blanchard requesting a retrial. Dean was convicted of child molestation of his adopted daughter but she later told a DEFACS worker that she lied about her accusations and sent a letter to Scott Dean's attorney stating that she lied.

 

It could be weeks before Scott Dean finds out if a judge will grant him a new trial.

The former Columbia County commissioner accused in 2010 of inappropriately touching his adopted daughter, Silda, was n an Evans courtroom Friday petitioning for an extraordinary motion for new trial.

Superior Court Judge James G. Blanchard Jr. agreed to take the request under consideration. He’s expected to make as decision as early as a few weeks.

The hearing was the result of Miss Dean, now 19, recanting her testimony accusing Mr. Dean of climbing into her bed and inappropriately touching her on one occasion in 2010 and exposing himself and propositioning her on another.

“It was a lie,” Miss Dean said from the stand at the hearing. Seeing her adoptive father now in prison for the crimes is difficult, she said. “I feel sad. Sometimes I feel bad too because he’s innocent.”

Miss Dean made the allegations in October 2010 and Mr. Dean was indicted on two counts of child molestation in February 2011.

In December 2011, a jury convicted Mr. Dean on both counts. Blanchard sentenced Mr. Dean to 20 years in prison in January 2012. He’s currently being held in Georgia State Prison in Reidsville, Ga.

Miss Dean, who was removed from the Dean home and moved into a foster home in late 2010, said she made the allegations because she didn’t like Mr. Dean’s wife, Renee. The Deans adopted Miss Dean and her four siblings from Guatemala in September 2008.

Miss Dean told a state Department of Family and Children Services social worker in July 2012 that the allegations were a lie. That social worker testified Friday that she told her supervisor and the issue was discussed with local and state DFCS legal counsels. Nothing was ever done with the information.

“The fact that this information would just be held down is astounding,” Mr. Dean’s attorney, Pete Theodocion said.

In January of this year, Miss Dean told her foster mother that she made up the allegations against Mr. Dean to get away from Mrs. Dean and get out of their Harlem home. She wrote a letter that she mailed to her adoptive mother and to Theodocion in February, explaining that her previous testimony was a lie and that Mr. Dean is not guilty of the charges that he was convicted of.

“It was hard for me to say something that wasn’t true,” Miss Dean said. “I got confused and I didn’t know what to do.”

Blanchard denied a motion for a new trial June 2012 and the Georgia Court of Appeals upheld that decision in May.

“We know it is not easy to come in and get a new trial after the fact,” Theodocion said. “This was not a fair trial. ... It is very rare that we have the opportunity to right a wrong like this.

“A jury has the right to know. A jury has the right to know the full story.”

Theodocion said the request for a new trial meets the six requirements to have a new trial granted based on new evidence.

Assistant District Attorney Madonna Little argued and cited case law that a victim’s recantation is not cause for a new trial. And any new evidence coming forward cannot be to impeach a witness post-trial.

Mr. Dean’s wife said she’s not happy with the result of the hearing, but that she’s proud of her daughter who “held her head high and told the truth.”

“Of course, we’re disappointed it wasn’t an immediate exoneration,” Mrs. Dean said. “But it’s hopeful.”

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Comments (9)

mll

The most significant thing that came out of this hearing

Besides Silda Dean recanting her previous testimony & admitting to lying about her adoptive father was that she told DFACS in July 2012 that she had lied. July 2012! The DFACS worker Brenda Neal that testified this afternoon said she told her supervisor who then reported it to the DFACS attorney. Then the home office of DFACS of Georgia in Atlanta was informed that the victim had recanted. Now keep in mind this was July of 2012. After this the information became lost, buried. REALLY? Then fast forward seven months to February of 2013. Silda Dean wrote several letters recanting her testimony & charges. Two of these letters were received by 1.( Renee Dean-wife of Scott Dean) & 2. Pete Theodocion (Scott Dean's attorney) It did not come out in the testimony where else these letters were sent. I can imagine where they were sent but without facts I cannot say. Silda Dean instructed Mrs. Pough (her foster mother) to mail these letters & Mrs. Pough addressed & mailed the letters. After receiving the letter Mr. Theodocion starting filing the necessary paperwork to secure the hearing that was this afternoon. When filing for this hearing I would suspect that the Ashley Wright's office was informed however the attorney who represents that office informed the court today that she had just received the notice about the hearing this morning so she was somewhat at a disadvantage. REALLY? The office that worked so hard to put Scott Dean into prison was unaware of today's scheduled hearing? The paperwork for this hearing was filed in Augusta of 2013 so it is very strange to me that Ashley Wright's office claimed ignorance of this. More inconvenient misinformation? From the improper investigation of this in the beginning, the makeup of the grand jury that indicted Scott Dean to today's hearing it has been a county & state accumulation of errors & oversights. But Scott Dean still went to prison. I find this totally disgusting & very questionable on the parts of all officials involved from the county sheriff to the DFACS office, to the office of the District Attorney. Does anyone think we are to accept what they have done to this man & his family. I'd say at this point a full investigation into the whole case needs to be done. First & foremost Scott Dean needs to be out of prison & at least home on bail. The constant danger to this man in prison should not be overlooked & it would be too convenient for an accident to happen after learning of the DFACS huge misconduct.

mll

Scott Dean & Columbia County

As a professional I have known many of these people through my work however I assumed as professionals they also adhered to professional ethics & did not break the laws of objectivity & distance themselves when necessary. I know that in my field certain people & companies will stretch those ethical boundaries to fit their own agendas but I always thought & hoped that those individuals in law especially within the judicial community adhered to their standards beyond those of other professional fields. To find out there appears to be no boundaries in regard to ethics is horrific. I am not naive by any means. I know corruption exists but to the level it appears to exist within Columbia County is extraordinary. I feel despair for the people affected but also feel tremendous anger for those that have inflicted this injustice on these individuals. When our laws, ethics & morals are set aside for personal gain we become no better than animals or like third world countries that are run by a grease your palm sort of justice, in other word no justice at all.
Within our system of justice there also should be stringent controls in any area which has to do with children. We are there to protect them yet not to cross the line of parental rights. Parents while not always perfect have rights too & destroying the family unit does not help the children. As in the Dean case, accusations without evidence destroyed that family unit, caused tremendous financial hardships on extended family & friends not to mention the immediate family. A trumped up charge to protect one child completely destroyed the lives of 6 other children & several adults as well as Mr. Dean. Even if proven not guilty at this point, Dean’s life is destroyed, his career, his ability to provide for himself & his family is gone. I’m sure he will never recover from the horrors of prison life & this will affect his children & family for years if not forever. To know that the goal within our system was NOT to protect a child but the goal was to destroy a man who undoubtedly stepped on some political foes agenda is horrific & inexcusable. Several of his friends abandoned him & the family & chose to support those who put him into this horrible circumstance. I have nothing but disgust for those people & they know who they are. All I can say at this point is that God perhaps will have mercy for those people, I will not.

soapy_725

The CC jury of his peers found him guilty with no evidence?

Lets send the jury to jail. And the judge for not "nullifying the verdict". Something is not right. A CC jury convicted a man and sentenced him to 20 years in prison because a known liar SAID he did something. No bruises, no torn clothing, no cries for help during the encounter. She accuses her SAVIOR of molestation because she dislikes Mrs. Dean? Hogwash. This young woman has been "brainwashed" once more. Once when she was "saved from Guatemala". Once when she called government authorities into the Dean home. Once by DFACS. and finally by Theodocian.

Perjury is a none event in modern courtroom. So why not lie. The police lie, the jury lies, the judge lies and the attorneys (there lips are moving). Who is asked to tell the truth in the courtroom?

A total mockery of justice, which is supposed to mean TRUTH. Guilty or not. CC has once again been treated to a lesson. Do not call on the government for help. You will regret it as long as you live.

There is no justice in CC. Palaces for schools and public buildings. Fast food restaurants. Strip malls on every corner. And more home construction that post war Europe.

A confessed killer of his mother goes free.
A teacher who murdered his student goes free.
A teacher who technically raped her student goes free.

soapy_725

Scott will have his Superman Tee on when he gets out. No shame.

All of his friends and cronies will buy him a new cell phone with pre-programmed numbers of women whose husbands are deployed in war zones.

The adopted daughter is not the only one lying in Harlem.

soapy_725

Catch a rising STAR and put his cell # in your phone. LOL

Catch a rising STAR and put his cell # in your phone. LOL

Lakeside95

Soapy

Sounds like you have no idea nor do you care if Dean is guilty. You only care if he was more popular than you seem to be.
He was unjustly convicted, now DFACS and the court should correct this travesty of justice. Not to let him go free, just to allow for a new trial.
Do you really believe that texting is a crime worthy of 20 years in jail? As you said, there was no evidence of molestation. What there was a lot of was insinunation, rumor and political enemies. A jury deserves the right to hear truthful testimony and Scott deserves the right to be able to defend himself from charges. He was convicted by people like yourself that are smarter than the norm and the ever present media.

soapy_725

Verdict?? I would convict anyone on the word of a single

witness. Even the Bible asks for two. Especially when that witness is a known habitual liar. No physical evidence. No cries for help. Who was on that jury? Scott would have never been convicted had I been called to hear the so called "no evidence" case.

soapy_725

CC residents are in grave peril of the current jury selections.

And the judges. Stay out of the courtroom.

Little Lamb

Emotion

It might be good to tone down the emotions. I recommend that Scott Dean be released to society with the apology of the court. His time served should justify no parole, no probation, no supervision, record expunged.

Neither Dean nor society needs another trial. There was no crime committed here.

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