GBI responds to request for investigation into Statham police of - CBS46 News

GBI responds to request for investigation into Statham police officer

Posted: Updated:

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is now responding to a request to look into a troubled police department in metro Atlanta.

The GBI received a letter from Mayor Robert Bridges with the City of Statham, calling for an investigation into the police department and one of its officers.

After a preliminary review, the GBI found administrative concerns, but nothing criminal.

Mary Williams is a postal worker in town who was stopped by Officer Marc Lofton and charged with DUI for taking anti-depression medication.

“The FBI evidently approved me to drive a federal vehicle while taking these same meds, so Lofton in Statham says I’m DUI on them? I don’t possibly understand how that can be,” Williams said. "There’s something wrong here, there’s something very wrong.”

Our investigation found the City of Statham has made 267 DUI arrests during the past three years. Just up the road in the City of Auburn, they’ve made 56 DUI arrests and it’s a much larger town. And over in the City of Arcade, they’ve only made 8 DUI arrests during the same time frame.

“I think that tells a story in itself. A lot of people are being charged with DUI when they’ve done nothing wrong,” Williams said.

Williams and others have formed a coalition, calling out the city for what they believe is policing for profit.

“Yes, they’re policing for profit. It stinks of it and if you look at their financials you’ll see that too,” Williams said.

Williams said the City of Statham’s budget for police fines has more than tripled to $250,000 during the past three years.     

“If anybody does a review and they don’t find anything wrong, then we have another leg of this investigation that is really corrupt,” Williams said. “None of us have been contacted by the GBI, the mayor, the [district attorney], or anybody regarding this investigation.”

A GBI representative told CBS46 they have been communicating with District Attorney Brad Smith for a couple of weeks and they plan to allow him to complete a thorough investigation of his own first, and he will contact the GBI if he finds something criminal.

Some living in Statham don’t believe the GBI’s preliminary review was fair because they said Bridges and Lofton have friends and family working as GBI agents in the Athens field office.

Copyright 2016 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.