Former DeKalb County School Superintendent Crawford Lewis had lost his job and his reputation but he expected his legal troubles would be over Monday with his liberty intact.
The story you're reading is premium content from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Subscribers get total access to all our in-depth news, digital editions and exclusive premium content. You can now also buy a 24-hour digital pass or 7-day digital pass.
AJC Print subscriber - I've already registered my account.Sign In
AJC Print subscriber - I need to register my account for digital access.Access Digital
Read MyAJC.com now - 24-hour digital pass99¢ for 24-hours
Read MyAJC.com all week - 7-day digital pass$3.99 for 7-days
Subscribe to AJC for as little as 33¢ per dayView Offers
Even though the trial is over for Pat Reid and Tony Pope, there are still some legal steps that will be taken in an effort to overturn the convictions or get new trials. At the same time, Crawford Lewis will try to withdraw his guilty plea and force prosecutors to take it to trial. It is not clear if they would pursue the original felony racketeering and theft charges against him, the misdemeanor obstruction charge to which he pleaded guilty, or drop the case completely.
Former DeKalb school COO Pat Reid
Her role: Defendant
Her outcome: Sentenced to serve 15 years in prison followed by 10 years probation. She also will repay the district the $2,531.66 it spent repairing the county-issued Ford Explorer she tried to buy at one-third its value but returned when the investigation began.
What’s next: Reid will be held in the DeKalb County Jail until the Department of Corrections takes her into custody.
She will first go to the Lee Arrendale State Prison Habersham County in northeast Georgia where she will be assessed and given a security ranking and eventually assigned to one of three prisons women’s prison.
His role: Defendant
His outcome: Sentenced to serve 8 years in prison
What’s next: Will be held in the DeKalb County Jail until the Georgia Department of Corrections takes him to the Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison near Jackson about 50 miles south of Atlanta He will be assessed and given a security level and then assigned to one of the 28 prisons for men.
His role: Defendant
His outcome: Sentenced to 12 months in the DeKalb County Jail
What’s next: His lawyers will file a motion to withdraw his guilty plea to obstruction, a misdemeanor. If that is granted, he could be tried on the original felony charges or on the misdemeanor charge.
Judge: Cynthia Becker
District Attorney: Robert James
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution broke stories at the end of 2009 questioning school construction contracts that involved architect Tony Pope, who was married to the DeKalb County school district’s chief operating officer who was in charge of such projects. Soon afterward, the AJC also reported that Superintendent Crawford Lewis and COO Pat Reid had bought their county cars at deeply discounted prices.
The AJC published nearly 20 stories more before the three were indicted in May 2010 and has continued to track the case as the indictment went through three different versions, the key investigator and two prosecutors resigned, and it came to trial 3 1/2 years later.
Oct. 8, 2004: Crawford Lewis becomes DeKalb superintendent and later hires Pat Reid to oversee construction of new schools funded by the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax.
May 2010: Lewis, Reid, her husband Tony Pope and Reid’s assistant are indicted. (The assistant is later dismissed from the case, then dies.) Lewis is fired.
May 2012: The DeKalb district attorney brings a superseding indictment against Lewis and the others.
July 18: Another amended indictment further shrinks the case against Lewis, Reid and Pope.
Oct. 16: Lewis pleads guilty to a misdemeanor.
Oct. 28: Start of trial against Reid and Pope, with Lewis testifying against his former co-defendants.
Nov. 15: The jury begins deliberating.
Nov. 20: The jury reaches a verdict.
Dec. 9: Reid and Pope are sentenced; a judge rejects Lewis’ plea agreement that spared him jail time.