Former Clayton County sheriff Victor Hill indicted on 37 counts of fraud and abuse www.privateofficer.com
CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. Jan 19 2012
A grand jury indicted former Clayton County sheriff Victor Hill on 37 counts, alleging he used county cars for getaways and county credit cards for shopping sprees.
Hill’s charges include theft by taking, making false statements and violation of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act, wrapping up a nearly year-long investigation.
A hearing was immediately held for Hill where a judge set bond at $50,000 and ordered the former sheriff to surrender his passport, remain in Georgia and not to contact any witnesses. Hill was still behind bars the next morning. His attorney said bonding companies want no part in the case.
“I’ve had them tell me they will not for fear that they will be decertified from being able to have bonds at the Clayton County Jail in the future,” attorney Musa Ghanayem said.
Channel 2 investigative reporter Mark Winne talked to Hill before he addressed the grand jury panel Wednesday. Hill maintained his innocence and said he still plans on running for sheriff again.
“Looking forward to defending myself. I think everyone knows it’s politically motivated and we’re ready to get back on the campaign trail,” Hill told Winne.
The grand jury started an investigation into Hill in April, and prosecutors finished their presentation on Wednesday afternoon. Hill then had the option to make a final statement before the panel voted on the charges.
Sources told Winne the special grand jury looked at the use of county credit cards, the handling of campaign finances, if there was personal travel using county equipment, if county employees engaged in campaign or personal business for Hill.
Clayton County Sheriff Kem Kimbrough has been critical of Hill, whom he won against in 2008. Kimbrough said he takes no joy in Hill’s downfall but considers it vindication.
“It is not politically motivated. It is all about accountability and the integrity of the offices we hold,” Kimbrough told Winne.
Kimbrough said he would be ready for Hill in another face-off.
“This is how I’m going to campaign against him,” Kimbrough told Thomas, holding a copy of the indictment against Hill. “Not only was he a poor sheriff, but he broke the law.”
Beatrice Powell, a former Clayton County corrections officer, was also indicted on perjury and theft by taking charges in connection with Hill’s case. Investigators said they contacted her last summer about her friendship with Hill.
Investigators said they wanted to know if Powell campaigned for Hill on county time and whether he allowed her to get paid on the county’s dime. Powell told investigators she committed no crime.
Hill’s attorney, Steve Fry, said he will fight the charges and Hill has not violated the law.
Hill is currently being held in the Gwinnett County Jail instead of the Clayton County Jail for security reasons.
Sheriff fires 14 deputies on his first day in office http://www.privateofficer.com
Kimbrough said the firings were part of his campaign promise to clean up the department, but some of the fired deputies said they were targeted because of their connection to former Sheriff Victor Hill.
“I was fired because of my affiliation with Victor Hill,” insisted former Deputy Edward Hobbs.
Kimbrough said he fired Hobbs because Hobbs has a criminal record.
“I don’t know this guy, I don’t care about this guy, but he is a criminal, a thug,” said Kimbrough.
Kimbrough told Channel 2 Action News he’s instituted a new code of conduct built on the foundation of integrity and honesty.
“Victor (Hill) hired outcasts, thugs and rejects from every agency,” Kimbrough said.
The new sheriff said as long as he wears the badge, “accountability will be the buzz word.”
On his first day in office in January 2005, Hill fired 34 deputies, most of them white, and posted snipers on the courthouse roof as he escorted them out of the building — a move that cost the county more than $7 million to settle lawsuits arising from the action.
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Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Houston TX. Oct. 30, 2007
A man suspected of shooting a Houston police officer while he was being arrested was found dead in a field Sunday, KPRC Local 2 reported.
Police said Officer Victor Hill, who was not in uniform, arrested Eric Titov, 22, on suspicion of breaking into cars at the complex in the 18600 block of South Park View Drive near West Park View Drive at about 12:30 a.m.
Investigators said Titov, who was handcuffed, pulled out a gun and shot Hill in the chest.
Hill called for backup and was taken to Memorial Hermann Hospital in critical condition.
Titov ran from the scene, detectives said. He was found dead in a field on Barker Cypress Road near Saums Road on Sunday afternoon. Police have not said how he died.
Titov had several credit cards and driver’s licenses that did not belong to him, detectives said. Hill has been with the Houston Police Department for 14 years.
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