GBI probe involving MCSB & GA State Senator McKoon headed to Att - WRBL

GBI probe involving MCSB & GA State Senator McKoon headed to Attorney General's Office

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COLUMBUS, Ga. -

An official with the Georgia Bureau Investigation said on Thursday the case involving Georgia State Senator Josh McKoon, local political consultant Frank Myers and the Muscogee County School Board will be sent to the Attorney General's Office.

State investigators have been trying to determine if McKoon and Myers overstepped legal boundaries by trying to influence the members of the board to replace current legal counsel, the Hatcher, Stubbs Law Firm.

It will be up to the AG office whether criminal charges will be brought against any of the parties involved or if a grand jury needs to be impaneled. There is no time limit by which the decision needs to be made.

The GBI probe started nearly six months ago in March. Two school board members approached to police about looking into the matter.

The Courier, a local newspaper, obtained text messages sent from Myers to three board members, including John Wells and Athavia Senior. In one January 2013 message to Wells that referred to his position on the law firm, Myers wrote," Since I can't seem to get you to call me back, let me spell it out for you. If the school board is status quo on the issues important to ME after Tuesday night. I'm taking you out in 2014. Got it?"

At the time Myers had been very vocal claiming the district was over-paying for legal services and wanting them to find a new law firm. Earlier this year, News 3 spoke with Myers about his allegations. In the interview he said, "It's as if the school board has given Hatcher Stubbs access to a humongous ATM with a tax payers debit card and pin number, that's pretty much what is going on."

McKoon was under fire after he was accused of threatening to withhold state funds from the school district if its no-bid contract with the firm continued. Wells, Senior and Board Member Beth Harris filed a complaint with the State Senate Ethics Committee, but it was dropped in April after the subcommittee did not find any ethical violations.

McKoon claimed it was an effort to smear his reputation during an interview in April. "I understand that politics is a contact sport, but I tell you this, no one should have to pick up the phone and call their 82 year old grandmother and explain to them that something that is about to printed in the newspaper is a lie, that it's not true"

New 3 spoke with Senator McKoon via phone Monday. In that conversation he said he did not want to participate in any story that would further the allegations. He firmly believes the GBI investigation will be dismissed. He also stated that he did not seek out meetings with certain board members, but that they requested his attendance.

McKoon said it was more than a month ago when state investigators interviewed him. A GBI official said they interviewed Myers last week. Both sessions lasted about two hours, which officials say is standard.

The board members involved in the probe said they wanted to wait until the probe runs its course before commenting. Back in April Wells spoke with News 3 about McKoon and the investigation. "I think he's dancing around the issues. I think he's trying to cover his tracks. He's been caught red handed trying to bribe the board, in my opinion."

Sydney Cameron

Sydney joined the WRBL news team in December 2011 after working as a freelance reporter in Washington, D.C. More>>

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