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Thursday, October 4, 2012 - 12:12pm

Deputies Suspended In Judge DUI Case

Bibb County sheriff’s deputies who let a Superior Court judge drive away after he failed a breath test will receive official reprimands.

Captain Alden Washington will also receive five days suspension without pay and have to attend a 16-hour professional ethics course. Sergeant Bruce Jordan will be suspended for three days and receive a transfer.

At a news conference Bibb County Sheriff Jerry Modena read a summary of his internal investigation revealing previously unknown details.

On Saturday, September 22nd, a Douglass County deputy pulled over Judge Howard Simms at a roadblock as part of a multi-agency enforcement operation. The judge’s breath smelled of alcohol.

A Bibb County deputy administered a breath test which came in just above the legal limit. At that point, Washington and Jordan stepped in and observed there was “no slurred speech, no blood-shot eyes, and that Simms appeared the same as he always did.”

Washington made the decision to allow Simms to leave the scene and followed him home, Modena said.

Modena did not take any questions, and had words for the media: “I swore back in 2000 I would keep this office open, and that’s what I’ve done. The last two to three days there, y’all have tied up my phones. I have other things I have to do rather than try and give you information,” he said.

Other judges have been handling Simms’ cases this week. He had promised to enter treatment for alcoholism.