Residents Await Governor's Probe Results in Inmate Labor Case - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

11/08/04

Residents Await Governor's Probe Results in Inmate Labor Case

Former inmate Andrew Jackson. Former inmate Andrew Jackson.

The elections have come and gone, but one politician's worries aren't over yet. In Screven County, Sheriff Mike Kile won reelection, but he and the community are still awaiting the results of a governor's investigation after former inmates accused him of illegally working them on private property.

Today is the deadline for a committee to report to Gov. Sonny Perdue. As the community awaits the results, feelings run deep for and against Mike Kile.

Andrew Jackson is a former Screven County Jail inmate who says he's watched with interest the firestorm around Sheriff Kile. He says he and hundreds of other inmates were worked illegally.

"Went to the school, not sure of the name there at the end of Friendship Road, worked there," he told us. "Worked at the senior citizens place and worked at the waste water treatment plant."

Jackson says he also worked at churches and other private property around the county.

If the Governor finds wrongdoing in the investigation, he could do anything from suspend Sheriff Kile to kicking him out of office. The people in Screven County are just as split over that as last week's vote would indicate.

"My opinion is he's a very good sheriff and if I had to vote for him again, I'd do it," Sylvania resident Gloria Gordon told us.

"As for who's right for the job, I don't know. But I know Mike Kile isn't," said Adam Roberts, also from Sylvania. "I didn't vote for him and I don't know why anybody should have."

For now, Andrew Jackson is waiting to see what the governor has to say.

The attorney general's office submitted the report to the governor around 4:30pm today. A spokesperson at that office said it is now up to the governor as to when he acts upon it. We'll keep you posted.

Reported by: Dal Cannady, dcannady@wtoc.com

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