Prosecution begins questioning Burrell Ellis - CBS46 News

Prosecution begins questioning Burrell Ellis

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Testimony wrapped up on Thursday with the prosecution beginning its cross examination of suspended DeKalb County CEO Burrell Ellis.

Ellis is accused of threatening contractors to donate to his campaign or risk losing county work.

"If I believe someone doesn't return phone calls or delivers bad customer service, or is impolite, or is rude, or lies or is deceitful, I believe I have a responsibility to look at it no different than if I learned someone was a terrorist," Ellis testified.

That prompted District Attorney Robert James to write the word "terrorist" on an easel for the jury to see.

"It's like as if the county were doing business with a terrorist?" James asked Ellis. "Well, I was using it as an example," Ellis replied.

The CEO has said he used vendor lists to solicit donations but testified he found nothing wrong about the practice.

"I've never asked or ordered anyone to not get work because they declined to contribute to my campaign," said Ellis.

The defense rested its case earlier Thursday by asking Ellis if he was guilty of any of the charges he faces, including extortion and theft.

Ellis repeatedly replied, "I am not guilty of those charges."

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