The Atlanta Constitution from Atlanta, Georgia on April 22, 2004 · D5
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The Atlanta Constitution from Atlanta, Georgia · D5

Atlanta, Georgia
Issue Date:
Thursday, April 22, 2004
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MAIR0422-A-D M@5 -Composite Proof 4/22/04 0:00 0:00 LAW & ORDER Estate seeks $8.8 million Lawyers representing the estate of Lita McClinton Sullivan have lodged a garnishment complaint of nearly $9 million against the Atlanta law firm defending jailed millionaire James Vincent Sullivan, who is accused of arranging his wife’s 1987 murder for hire. The action filed Wednesday in Fulton State Court on behalf of Emory and Jo Ann McClinton, Lita Sullivan’s parents, requests an “immediate hold” on attorneys’ fees, wages or debts owed by James Sullivan to the firm of Garland, Samuel and Loeb to pay a $4 million wrongful death civil judgment from 1994, plus 10 years and two months of interest. “We estimate that comes to $8.8 million they [lawyers] have been paid or are owed by Sullivan for legal services, and we are entitled to it as the administrators of the estate,” said attorney David Boone, who sued Garland, Samuel and Loeb on March 30 to bar the firm from obtaining any fees or other funds from Sullivan. Defense lawyer Don Samuel has said that that suit, if successful, would violate Sullivan’s Sixth Amendment right to hire counsel. Sullivan, a former Palm Beach, Fla., investor, was extradited March 26 to Atlanta from Thailand. A civil jury in West Palm Beach, Fla., awarded the McClintons $4 million. Samuel and his law partner Ed Garland were in a trial out of state Wednesday and could not be reached for comment. — Bill Montgomery FULTON COUNTY Death to be sought in ‘demon’ slaying Prosecutors plan to seek the death penalty against a couple accused of killing their 8-year-old daughter to rid the child’s body of a demon. Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard believes that Christopher Carey, 29, and Valerie Carey, 27, should pay the ultimate price for strangling and stabbing little Quimani in their Midtown motel room, Howard’s spokesman, Erik Friedly, said Wednesday. Passers-by called police after seeing the Careys walking nude along Piedmont Avenue with their other two children, Christopher Jr., 2, and Ajah, 6, early Jan. 19. Police found the child’s body in the family’s room at Savannah Suites motel on Pine Street. Howard also plans to seek the death penalty against an accused three-time killer, Friedly said. Frederick Gude, 60, is accused of stabbing an acquaintance more than 30 times with an ice pick. Jacquelyn Nash, 54, was killed Jan. 20 in her elderly aunt’s southeast Atlanta home. Gude has served separate prison terms for a previous murder and a manslaughter. COBB COUNTY Woman charged in boyfriend’s death A woman who allegedly stabbed her boyfriend in the abdomen during a quarrel- Tuesday was charged with murder after the man died Wednesday morning. Cora Ballard, 45, of Chicago was arrested after police detectives interviewed witnesses to an altercation Tuesday afternoon between Ballard and Michael Henderson, 46, of Marietta at an apartment on Frasier Street, police said. Henderson died after surgery. — Staff reports Lita Sullivan FMAIR0422OD5 Replate 5D 5D RR RR *CNZ22OD005CY* *CNZ22OD005CY* *CNZ22OD005MA* *CNZ22OD005MA* *CNZ22OD005YE* *CNZ22OD005YE* *CNZ22OD005KB* *CNZ22OD005KB* BlueRedYellowBlack Blue RedYellowBlack D5 6 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution / Thursday, April 22, 2004 Golf cart limits to be lifted today By ROCHELLE CARTER Venice has its gondolas, San Francisco its cable cars. In Peachtree City, it’s golf carts. But last spring, the town’s beloved symbol hit a legal speed bump. That’s when a court ruled anyone driving a golf cart needed a valid driver’s license, leaving young teenagers and some senior citizens — the folks who value the carts the most — to walk, bicycle or sit in the passenger seat. Today, a piece of Peachtree City’s identity will be restored, when Gov. Sonny Perdue signs legislation putting the old golf cart law back on the books. The measure allows almost anyone to drive a golf cart along the 88 miles of paved paths that snake through the town. That is good news for people such as the Molodetzes. About a year ago, they moved from Rochester, N.Y., and chose to live in Peachtree City specifically for the golf carts. At the time, anyone age 16 or older — with a driver’s license or not — could legally drive the carts. So could a 15-year- old with a learner’s permit. And children as young as 12 could drive, too, as long as they had a parent, grandparent or legal guardian by their side. In June, the city decided to require valid driver’s licenses, two years after police arrested a golf cart driver who had been drinking and had a suspended license. So the Molodetz family has never been able to enjoy life fully in Peachtree City. Annie Molodetz’s 15th birthday fell in October, after the change went into effect. “It’s very frustrating,” says Annie, a sophomore at McIntosh High School. ‘‘I’m a lot younger than most of the people in my grade. For a long time, all my friends could drive it [a golf cart] and I couldn’t. Then when I was of age, I couldn’t.” Today’s bill signing means that Annie’s mother, Margaret Molodetz, no longer will have to serve as taxi driver for her four children. Annie and her sister, Emma, 13, will take turns as chauffeur. “It will be really nice,” says Margaret Molodetz. The founders of Peachtree City, created 45 years ago, built golf cart trails along the sewer routes. Today, the Fayette County town has 9,000 registered golf carts — one for every four residents, who drive them to stores, schools, offices and even to the three golf courses within the city limits. Hundreds of senior citizens and people with disabilities live in Peachtree City for the same reason as the Molodetzes. They didn’t need cars and gave up driving. Golf carts are their key to independent living. “In modern suburbia, if you don’t have a car, forget about it,” says Peachtree City Mayor Steve Brown. “You’re in the assisted living facility.” Not here. But teenagers get perhaps the most excited about the carts, because they serve as a transition to driving cars. McIntosh High School even has a special golf cart parking lot. Annie Molodetz says she’ll be tearing up and down the paths as soon as she gets home from school. “You might as well take advantage of it if you live in the city,” she says. “You don’t have to pay for gas.” MARLENE KARAS / Staff The Molodetz family is glad the legal age for driving golf carts in Peachtree City is being lowered today. From left are Rachel, 10, Annie, 15, mother Margaret and Emma, 13. Gov. Sonny Perdue is set to sign legislation restoring the old golf cart rules today. Driver’s licenses won’t be needed in Peachtree City There was no sign of a struggle, police said. Her black Tahoe, which was usually parked to the left of the building, had been moved to the front, blocking the front door from heavy traffic that passes 50 feet away. The witness said it was front bumper to front bumper with a white cargo van. Clients often drive by and see Endres through the screen door and wave, honk or stop in, said Robert Endres, 58. “Unfortunately, we didn’t have somebody do that at 11:54 [a.m.] on Thursday,” he said. Robert Endres describes his wife as loving, a magician at work, “exquisitely beautiful,” the winner of every argument and devoted to her 15-year-old son. “ ‘Hey, woman,’ is how she greets her friends,” he said. Energetic, she rises at 5:15 every morning and works out for 45 minutes, Endres said. Then she “fights with her closet to get just the right outfit,” takes son D.W. — also known as “Pistol” — to school, works, picks him up, works some more, may do something with D.W., and returns late to their Cherokee County home. Ramey Tucker, 18, calls her “St. Patrice,” for Endres’ work to fix a home hair-coloring mess late one night so she could have a decent senior picture taken the next day, and for being like a friendly big sister. She didn’t suffer any foolishness, either, Tucker said. “If I was there any length of time, she’d make me wash the towels.” Patrice Endres even brushed off others’ concerns about her working alone and into the night, joking that she always carried scissors. Two weeks ago, Tucker and two friends asked Endres to do their hair, makeup and nails for their prom on May 7, booking most of her day. “Nobody else has ever cut my hair,” said Tucker, Wednesday returning from passing out a new batch of fliers. The copies, which the girls paid for with $40 of their own money, show Endres, a sketch of a suspect, and information about a $5,000 reward. Forsyth: Salon owner missing ➤ Continued from D1 __________________________________________________________________________________ A benefit fund for Patrice Endres and her son has been established at Regions Bank in Forsyth County. Contributions may be made at any branch or by mail to: Regions Bank, c/o Bonnie Welchel, FBO/Patrice Endres and D. Wade “Pistol” Black, 3270 Dahlonega Highway, Cumming, GA 30040. HOW TO HELP RMAIN0422OD5 By RICHARD WHITT Samuel J. ‘‘Rickey” Rowe, an important figure in the federal investigation of Atlanta City Hall and former Atlanta Mayor Bill Campbell, died Monday. A familiar face at City Hall during Campbell’s two terms, Rowe himself came under federal scrutiny along with the mayor. The U.S. attorney subpoenaed records of at least three companies with ties to Rowe that held contracts with the city. Rowe’s lawyer, Michael Bergin, said at one point that he expected his client to be indicted. He never was. But the four-year investigation took a toll on Rowe, Bergin said. “It is an investigation that went on for years, and several months into it, he got sick,” Bergin said. ‘‘I said at the time they were going to drive him to the grave, and they have.” Rowe, 58, died of complications of diabetes, said family friend Kevin Ross. Patrick Crosby, spokesman for the U.S. attorney, declined to comment. The federal investigation has resulted in the convictions of 11 people, including some of Campbell’s top aides, and one company. Companies owned by Rowe and his wife, Dorothy, won more than $20 million in city business during Campbell’s two terms, some of it through noncompetitive or long-expired contracts. One Rowe company, R&D Testing and Drilling, collected $17.5 million under a contract for testing soil and construction materials and doing jobs that ranged from overseeing the removal of old city gasoline tanks to supervising the cleanup of a park built atop a landfill. Rowe sold the company after Campbell left office. Another Rowe company collected more than $3 million for operating vending machines at Hartsfield- Jackson International Airport and also supplies vending machines to City Hall. A family service will be held this evening. The funeral will be at 11 a.m. Friday at Cascade United Methodist Church. Rickey Rowe, figure in City Hall probe, dies METRO BRIEFS Car booter could get boot A car booting company may get booted from Atlanta. CID Parking Enforcement faces up to $71,000 in fines and the possible revocation of its license after the Atlanta License Review Board on Tuesday found the company at fault for overcharging motorists to remove the device. The board’s recommended punishment has been forwarded to Mayor Shirley Franklin for a decision. CID charged some motorists’ credit cards up to $3,000, claiming that the company was entitled to legal fees from those motorists who appealed the $50 boot removal fee to the city, said License Review Board Chairman Barney Simms. Fine print in the paperwork that CID made motorists sign before releasing their cars stated that the motorists would be responsible for the company’s legal fees should they challenge the booting incident. But booting companies are not authorized to bill motorists for legal fees and by law cannot charge more than the regular removal fee, Simms said. ‘‘You can only charge $50, period,” he said. The board found that the company had overcharged motorists in 72 out of 126 cases it examined. The board recommended a fine of $1,000 for each of 71 offenses and the revocation of the company’s license. A revocation would bar the owners from the booting business in the city, Simms said. CID Parking Enforcement’s case was the most “egregious” violation of city booting regulations that the board has seen, Simms said. A man who answered CID’s telephone number and identified himself as a manager pointed out that the license board’s decision is just a recommendation. A message left for CID owner Stephen Perkins was not returned. A spokesman for the mayor said Franklin would review the case in the next few weeks. — Milo Ippolito COBB COUNTY Developer in line for Marietta project The contract to build a $63 million commercial and residential development in the heart of Marietta will go to an Atlanta-based developer if, as expected, Marietta City Council approves the project next month. The Marietta Redevelopment Corp. voted Wednesday to approve the contract between Peter Drey/ Madison Retail and the city. The council will hold its final vote on the contract May 12. The average unit would contain 1,577 square feet and sell for up to $300,000. Plans call for a 29,250-square-foot grocery store within 391,975 square feet of commercial space. The site also would have 717 parking spaces. The redevelopment is to be subsidized partly through a tax allocation district approved last year. — Brenden Sager ATLANTA Gay rights leader will take union job Allen Thornell, a key player in the effort to block a constitutional amendment against same-sex marriage in Georgia, is leaving as director of Georgia Equality. Thornell, who headed the state’s largest gay rights organization for two years, will become deputy regional political director for the Service Employees International Union. The constitutional amendment narrowly passed the Legislature and is on the November ballot. — Jim Tharpe Regents postpone decision on costs Students at Georgia’s public colleges and universities will have to wait another month to find out how much their education costs this fall. The University System Board of Regents deferred a decision this week on tuition and fees until its May 18-19 meeting in Atlanta. Regents spokeswoman Arlethia Perry- Johnson said the regents want to wait until the Legislature has held its special session on the state budget before setting tuition. The Legislature is expected to reconvene soon to discuss filling a $57.7 million hole in the state’s fiscal 2005 budget. — Kelly Simmons DEKALB COUNTY Stokes will run for Congress seat State Sen. Connie Stokes (D-Decatur) announced plans Wednesday to run for the 4th Congressional District seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Denise Majette. Stokes has served 10 years in the Senate, with health care, education and economic development among her main interests. She plans to formally declare her candidacy Monday, the first day of qualifying. Other announced Democratic candidates for the seat are Atlanta City Council President Cathy Woolard, state Sen. Nadine Thomas (D- Ellenwood) and former U.S. Rep. Cynthia McKinney, who wants to regain the seat she lost to Majette in 2002. Majette is running for a U.S. Senate seat. — Donna Lewis Stokes Walker, a Baptist, said she took the job because “the governor and I have the same spiritual values. My faith drives my values about my work.” Perdue announced in September he was removing Jim Martin as commissioner of DHR, which has had to respond to questioning about the deaths of several children under the agency’s protection. Martin continued to run the agency for two months after it was announced he was leaving. Acting Commissioner Maria Greene will resume her duties as head of the agency’s aging services. Walker, who has two adult children and four grandchildren, worked for Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, a Democrat, for four years, after heading the welfare reform effort for a Republican governor of Illinois starting in 1995. Supervision of children under state custody has been mired in controversy for years. In addition, the state’s community-based mental health system, also overseen by DHR, has suffered from its own series of problems. But Walker, who adopted her now grown daughter after she and her husband were the girl’s foster parents, said she is not deterred. “This [DHR] board and this governor have started the good work,” Walker said. “My job is to pick [the work] up and enhance it.” ➤ Continued from D1 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Walker: DHR gets new leader

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