Few maintains innocence as Columbia County investigates

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September 26, 2006

Ronnie Few may be eligible to run for Augusta mayor, but now he may be facing trouble in Columbia County.

News 12 has learned the Columbia County Sheriff's Office is investigating whether Few knowingly filed a false homestead exemption there.

This investigation comes after a Martinez man, Jim Bible, filed a complaint with the Columbia County Sheriff's Office yesterday.

News 12 has new information about this case, and Ronnie Few's reaction in an exclusive interview.

"We're going to be looking into whether Ronnie Few knowingly and willfully falsified this particular affidavit," Capt. Steve Morris of the Columbia County Sheriff's Office told News 12.

Few received tax breaks on a home in Evans, although he was living in Richmond County. He maintains it was a misunderstanding and says he is prepared to correct the mistake.

"If it's some way I've gained something from this, I would be glad to pay it back," he told News 12. "That's the only thing you can do."

The question for Columbia County investigators is not whether Few made a false statement, but whether he had criminal intent. The answer to that will determine if charges are brought against him.

"He could face a fine of $1000 dollars and one to five years imprisonment," Capt. Morris said.

"They have a right to do a charge, and I have no problem with that, but I continue to tell everybody it was an error," Few said.

Few tells News 12 he'll remain focused on his campaign, and the sheriff's office tells us they'll conduct a thorough investigation.

"We're not entering this investigation predisposed," Capt. Morris said. "We're open minded, impartial, and we'll let the facts speak for themselves."

Capt. Morris says the investigation will take at least a week, and part of the investigation will include an interview with Few.

Then things will go through the DA's office, where Few could be facing felony charges.

News 12 did some checking. The Georgia Constitution, Article 2 Section 2 Paragraph 3 doesn't allow someone to hold public office if they've been convicted of a felony.