The Georgia Judicial Qualifications Commission disposed of its ethics complaint against James E. Anderson, the former Chief Magistrate Court Judge of Tattnall County, on Thursday, August 11, 2022. The case is styled as ‘In the Matter of Judge James E. Anderson’ with case number #2022-480.

On June 22, 2022, Tattnall County Sheriff Kyle Sapp requested that the GBI Regional Investigative Office in Statesboro look into claims of theft, trespassing, and terrorist threats after an incident report was submitted on the subject. Anderson allegedly illegally invaded another citizen’s property and grabbed produce from his garden. When the homeowner called Anderson to talk about the problem, Anderson threatened to hurt him in front of onlookers.

The judge was charged with violating Rules 1.1 and 1.2 (A) of the Code of Judicial Conduct.

The report of disposition reads:

“After the Complaint was received on June 23, 2022, the Director conducted a review and determined that, if true, the allegations against Anderson would constitute judicial misconduct.”

The report continues:

On July 25, 2022, after a preliminary investigation by the Investigative Panel, Anderson submitted a resignation from his position as Chief Magistrate Court Judge of Tattnall County to Governor Brian Kemp, with an effective date of July 26, 2022. Governor Kemp received and accepted said resignation on August 1, 2022. In light of Anderson’s resignation, the Investigative Panel and Anderson have mutually agreed upon a disposition of Complaint No. 2022-480 pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 15-1-21(k)(1) and JQC Rule 11 (A), which is fully set forth in the attached Consent Agreement, dated August 11, 2022, and includes Anderson’s agreement not to seek, request, or accept any elected or appointed judicial office in the future.

A copy of the original filing can be found here.