At the risk of sounding a little like a broken record, I happily once again report a court smackdown for Jerry Jackson Lee II.
Remember him? Hope not. But just in case he's already faded from memories - a prospect that would be far easier if he'd accept his punishment and quietly serve his time in prison - here's a brief background on the guy we call the Teflon Doc.
Lee is a former physician. He first popped up on the local bad-guy radar screen back in 2002 when he beat the crap out of his wife, including dragging her around by the hair.
That incident set up the first of his brushes with the law in which he skated by with little penalty. When his terribly deluded wife refused to testify, Judge Carlisle Overstreet found Jackson guilty instead of misdemeanor battery rather than the felony charges of aggravated assault and sexual battery that had landed him in jail.
A few months later, after his wife helpfully pointed investigators to Lee's cache of weapons - one of which was a machine gun - Lee faced an illegal firearms charge.
Judge Bernard Mulherin - who admitted taking Lee's status as a physician into account - found Lee innocent on that charge.
During this time, we also discovered the Teflon Doc had come to the Augusta area in the first place after in essence being chased out of Moultrie, Ga., by malpractice lawsuits.
Continued legal heat chased him to Mississippi and then again to South Georgia, where he wound up losing his license because of incidents that included shooting himself up with a patient's pain-killing medicine right in front of her.
Lee and his family moved back to Columbia County. And in May 2005, the Teflon finally wore off when a jury convicted Lee of sexually assaulting a 9-year-old girl. (The ex-doctor claimed he was just giving her a gynecological exam. What a creep.)
Why rehash all this stuff again? Well, because Lee keeps trying to weasel out of the punishment he's got coming to him - and thankfully, it isn't working.
Last week, the Georgia Court of Appeals rejected Lee's appeal, saying it could find no reason to overturn his 20-year sentence.
Dare we hope that this is the last we'll hear of this guy until his 20 years run out?
Incidentally, we aren't rid of Charles Walker, either. His name popped up again last week when his lawyers appeared in federal court to ask for a new trial.
His legal team claims Walker is a victim of political persecution and selective prosecution. All that smoke and fog does nothing to obscure the fact that he is guilty, guilty, guilty of cheating and stealing - 127 counts of it, as agreed by the jury of his peers who convicted the former state senator. But I suppose this victimhood routine gives his supporters something to preen and posture about.
Walker has appealed all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court and gotten tossed out on his ear, but that hasn't stopped the legal begging. I suppose the only good thing to come of it is that a couple of lawyers are able to make car payments or something.
Mercedes: Class act
Speaking of cars, the folks at Mercedes of Augusta, along with ACHS Insurance, get high marks for again this year awarding a one-year lease on a new Mercedes 300 sedan to Columbia County's Teacher of the Year.
Allison Palfy, an early intervention teacher at Cedar Ridge Elementary, received the shiny new car last Thursday at the county's Teacher of the Year banquet.
It's hard to overstate the accolades these companies deserve for continuing this award in the light of current economic conditions. It would have been easy to simply walk away from the award, but they didn't.
That shows a tremendous level of corporate citizenship, and it's a credit to the importance of Columbia County's education system.
Well done, guys. And congratulations, Mrs. Palfy. Drive safely.
Barry L. Paschal is publisher of The Columbia County News-Times. E-mail email@example.com.
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.