County Administrator Joey Brown will finally get his day in court as the date for his trial on charges of peeping tom and unlawful surveillance is set for the Superior Court on Aug. 16.
The allegations stem from an incident that reportedly occurred April 1, 2006, and was reported to the Hinesville Police Department on April 6.
In her statement to police, Yvonne Tomlinson, then an 18-year old Bradwell Institute senior, reported she was tanning nude at the Sun-n-Side Tanning Salon when she looked at a mirror in the room and saw the reflection of a man peering at her over a booth wall.
She said as soon as they made eye contact, the man dropped behind the wall and disappeared from view. She went to the front desk where a salon worker told her the man in the next room was Joseph Brown.
Tomlinson filed an application for a warrant in May after being informed by the police department on procedures for doing so.
A hearing on her application was set for May 22, 2006, in magistrate court to determine if there was enough probable cause for the warrant to be issued. But Brown’s attorney, Joel Osteen, filed for a continuance and. For a still undisclosed, Tomlinson later withdrew her application for a warrant in June.
On June 10, 2006, the Eastern Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s Office placed a request to the Georgia Bureau of Investigations to continue to look into the allegations against Brown and was then appointed by the Georgia Attorney General to act as a potential prosecutor in the case.
The case was assigned to the Eastern Circuit DA after Atlantic Judicial Circuit DA Tom Durden withdrew himself because he knows Brown and works with Brown’s wife.
In September, a grand jury indicted Brown setting the stage for a jury trial. Both charges are felonies and Brown could face a sentence of up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine for each charge.
The September hearing was also the first time Brown declared he was innocent and looking forward to the trial to clear his name. Because of his exemplary record of service to the county, the commisson decided Brown would maintain his position pending the final disposition of this matter.