You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.


  • ePAPER

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks


Welcome to

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on

Ex-Cobb County GOP leader accused of molesting two boys

For four years, he served as the chairman of Cobb County’s Republican Party, the largest red county in Georgia. Joe Dendy was the face of his party, sharing his opinions on the Braves’ move and subtle suggestions that MARTA shouldn’t extend rail service into Cobb.

On Friday, Dendy made headlines again. But this time, it had nothing to do with his political persuasion.

The 71-year-old was arrested at his West Cobb home and charged with aggravated child molestation and child molestation, according to police. He is also wanted by the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office in Michigan, as well as the Laurens Police Department in South Carolina on additional sexual abuse allegations, Sgt. Dana Pierce with Cobb police said late Friday.

It’s the second time in recent months that a notable Cobb Republican has been investigated for molestation.

In December, Kennesaw councilman and former mayor Leonard Church was sentenced to 18 years in prison after pleading guilty to two counts of child molestation and four counts of sexual exploitation of children. Church, 67, who served two terms as mayor of Kennesaw, pleaded guilty to the charges just prior to his jury trial beginning.

Dendy is accused of molesting two boys, ages 4 and 12, during separate incidents inside his Creekview Court home, near Marietta, his arrest warrant states. One victim, who is now 20, told police he was molested in 2007 or 2008, when he was 12 or 13 years old. A second victim said Dendy molested him in December 2011, according to police.

A 4-year-old boy was sitting on Dendy’s lap when the man put his hand inside the boy’s pull-up diaper and touched him, a witness told investigators, according to the warrant.

An arrest warrant was issued for Dendy late Thursday, and deputies went to his home and arrested him at 9 a.m. Friday, booking records showed. Friday afternoon, another warrant was secured for Dendy, charging him with being a fugitive from justice. No details were available late Friday about the allegations in Michigan and South Carolina.

Dendy, a married grandfather, was being held without bond Friday night at the Cobb jail.

After serving two terms, each of them two years, as leader of the Cobb GOP, Dendy was succeeded last year by his vice chair, Rose Wing. The Cobb County Republican Party and key leaders in the party, including U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, Attorney General Sam Olens and former State GOP Chair Sue Everhart, declined to comment Friday on the arrest.

Dendy and his wife have run a travel agency from their home since 1993, according to the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office.

Next Up in Local

Charlotte teen missing a year found alive in Gwinnett County; man arrested
Charlotte teen missing a year found alive in Gwinnett County; man arrested

A 17-year-old girl who left her Charlotte home more than a year ago was found alive in Gwinnett County on Sunday, the FBI said. A special agent in Charlotte received information that Hailey Burns might be in the Atlanta area. Overnight, FBI Atlanta agents and detectives with the Gwinnett County Police Department found Burns at a home located at 2723...
Witness describes violent collision that killed Marietta man
Witness describes violent collision that killed Marietta man

A Marietta man is dead after a collision between a car and a pickup truck Sunday afternoon. The crash happened about 12:17 p.m. on South Cobb Drive at Appleton Road, Cobb County police spokeswoman Officer Alicia Chilton said.  Bruce Barker, 66, was killed when his Ford Ranger collided with a Ford Mustang driven by 21-year old Jabriel Wooden...
Drug-sniffing dog to patrol middle, high schools in Hall County
Drug-sniffing dog to patrol middle, high schools in Hall County

Students in Hall County middle and high schools will have canine company when they return to classes this fall.  The school district invested $15,000 on a police dog trained to detect drugs that will patrol the halls daily, Channel 2 Action News reported. Parent Gail Drake told the news station she believes illegal narcotics are a problem on campus...
87-year-old trapped at home after tree hits house
87-year-old trapped at home after tree hits house

Julia May Preston was home with her son when a massive tree fell on her house, trapping her on her property indefinitely, she says. Preston, 87, lives in northwest Atlanta, where several days of wet weather has softened ground and contributed to trees uprooting, Channel 2 Action News reported. Her son, Thomas Turner, described the sounds as the tree...
California woman finds frog in her salad
California woman finds frog in her salad

A California woman found an unpleasant addition to her salad earlier this month, as she uncovered a dead frog nestled inside the lettuce. >> Read more trending news  Shawna Cepeda was dining at BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse in West Covina and noticed her salad had a bitter taste, according to a Yelp review she posted on June 13...
More Stories