I-TEAM: An update on DA’s conflict of interest in deputy’s aggravated assault case

Published: Sep. 9, 2022 at 7:25 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Local court cases locked in limbo for years are finally starting to move their way through the court system again and we’re not talking about the ones held up because of COVID.

These are cases the Augusta District Attorney wanted someone else to handle.

Friday, we learned almost half of them now finally have new prosecutors.

Back in 2021, Jared Williams sent 83 conflict cases to the state attorney general’s office, far more than any other district attorney in the state.

To put it in perspective just how staggering that number is, consider this.

It’s double the number of all the cases sent in from Fulton, Gwinnett, Dekalb, Cobb, and Clayton counties combined.

One of those cases involves the Richmond County deputy charged with two felonies after hitting a fellow deputy on the head with a flashlight.


Brandon Keathley has been sitting at home on the tax-payer dime, collecting more than $80,000 on paid administrative leave, while the case was at a standstill.

Columbia County District Attorney Bobby Christine confirms the Prosecuting Attorneys’ Council of Georgia asked him to take this case and around 30 others from the Augusta circuit’s conflict list.

Christine says he “saluted smartly” and took them.

He tells the I-TEAM that the cases represent around 40 to 50 people and some of their cases have been pending for as long as seven years.

He says every case has a victim and they deserve to have their cases addressed, as do the accused.

But most importantly, if we don’t prosecute cases, bad guys are left on the streets to commit more crimes.

We’re working to learn how many of the remaining 83 cases are still unassigned.