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GOP squabble turns physical

Friction between the two competing factions of the Fayette County Republican Party in a March incident has led to misdemeanor simple battery charges being levied last week against Peachtree City resident Jim Richter for “grabbing” longtime Republican mainstay Marilyn Watts.

The March incident occurred at the Fayette County Republican Party breakfast at the IHOP restaurant in Fayetteville.

The incident involved documents that Richter had produced. Watts picked up one or more of the documents and Richter is said to have grabbed her shoulders while retrieving the documents.

Det. Mike Whitlow said the warrant on charges of simple battery was issued by a magistrate judge in Spalding County after Fayette County judges recused themselves.

Whitlow said the Spalding County judge viewed the restaurant’s video and determined that there was probable cause that a simple battery occurred. The video showed that Richter grabbed Watts’ shoulders, Whitlow said.

Whitlow in commenting on the video said it was clear that it was a contentious situation and that the restaurant manager intervened.




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NUK_1's picture

Guess "americanpatriots" got a little too worked-up over FC politics. This is not the actions of a real man.

It will be interesting to see how Brown, Barlow, and Ognio deal with this now that the incident was made public.

Do they show him support for grabbing a woman, or do they toss him aside after he helped all get elected.

Is this as stupid as Hearns arrest?

NUK_1's picture

I'd rather deal with pot-smokers going down the road than guys who grab on women at a damn IHOP. I mean, someone needs to grow up already or ratchet it down a bit on FC politics if it gets him this upset.

Pretty sure the current commissioners are going to distance themselves pretty quickly from good 'ol americanpatriots. Well, Ognio might not since he kind of had his own blow-up/road rage a while back, but at least that wasn't anything physical against someone.

I know Marilyn Watts has her detractors amongst the FC Repubs and the current commissioners for that matter, but there's no reason at all to put your hands on the woman.

I did mean Horgan.

Guess ole AP will probably take a sabbatical this summer and keep a low profile while he takes the Anger Management Class.

This certainly explains why AP hasn't been quoted at the county commission meetings to speak since March 14th.

Agreed. Anyone who puts a hand on a woman in anger needs help and his buddys on commission would be wise to stay clear of him.

"Consideration of a request from the Fayette County Republican Party to authorize the County Clerk to recognize and certify the removal of Ms. Marilyn Watts as the Republican Representative on the Fayette County Board of Elections, and to recognize and certify the appointment of Ms. Claudia Eisenburg as the Republican Party's replacement on the Fayette County Board of Elections".

I'm no fan of Ms. Watts, but this seems like retribution.

I wonder if Mr. Barlow prayed over this decision?

As with any political appointment, things change when there is a change of management. We have new leadership. Change is good. I do believe (though I don't know) that this was probably discussed long before the Watts lawsuit was filed.

For what it's worth, everyone I have talked to (this was the one GOP breakfast I missed this year) says that Jim was not at fault. I am told he brushed her shoulder when taking back papers that Marilyn had snatched out of his hand. He will have his day in court, and I am confident he'll prevail. Honestly, this would not have even made it this far in a less litigious society. This is a complete waste of our public resources. According to those who were there, he didn’t hit her. He didn’t attack her. He bumped her shoulder. I personally have been more vigorously assaulted while boarding a train...

Mr. Dienhart with all due respect, the article states that the detective saw the video that showed grabbing of the shoulders in a contentious situation. Placing ones hands on a woman is not acceptable, especially in anger.

Ms. Watts has been on the way out for some time, and I think everyone recognizes this, but perhaps her. AP will surely have his day in court, and everyone called to testify will remember only that which will achieve their personal agenda.

If every GOP meeting has this much action, you boys should start selling tickets.

It may have been angles or perception. I read it, and I have also talked to virtually everyone present. As you can imagine, it's quite the issue within the local GOP. Let's not hang AP before he gets his day in court. I truly hope you are wrong on the agenda angle. Putting your hand on the Bible and swearing to tell the truth still means something to me... and most people reading this. Hopefully those same people tell the truth when given an opportunity. Hope all you bloggers have a great week of the Fourth, and I hope to see you all at the parade.

You have a great week, too. I'll be there with my tent, blankie, pj's, change of shorts, smoker bbq, margarita fountain, golf cart and all my out of town relatives. Just kidding...well, probably yes on the golf cart and shorts.

You have fun, too. Stay out from behind those beautiful horses, please!!

The video will be the telling factor, indeed.

I am sure the factions within the GOP are taking sides based on whom they support. As for the agenda, Everyone has one. Since the Tea Party has the stronghold at the moment, some would bet that it would be political suicide to side against them at the moment.

Unless you have seen the video, your interpretation from others account is heresay, and biased by whomever you spoke with.

Perhaps Ms. Watts is making a mountain out of a mole hill due to her losing support thru the years and hopefully AP will be exonerated. However when our own judges recused themselves, it insinuates to the average person like myself, there may be some truth in the matter if they do not want any involvement.

Like MLC said, I will see you at the parade. Just look for the good looking guy relaxing by the side of the road on a tarp placed legally that morning.

NUK_1's picture

He states that there was probable cause for a simple battery charge after watching the video from IHOP and it wasn't a "bump."

Maybe you had better get your head out of the local Tea Party fanatics' backsides before your mayoral campaign goes down in flames. I don't get how grabbing someone's shoulders is the same as just bumping into them and neither does Det. Whitlow.

Read the comment- I said it may be a bad angle. I passed on what a roomful of witnesses say they saw. BTW, not everyone I talked to was a tea party person. Hope you have a great 4th.

NUK_1's picture

"Whitlow said the Spalding County judge viewed the restaurant’s video and determined that there was probable cause that a simple battery occurred. The video showed that Richter grabbed Watts’ shoulders, Whitlow said."

Seems you are claiming that Det. Whitlow(and the judge) is lying here. This is also a fight you probably don't want to pick, George.

You have a good 4th of July also.

hutch866's picture

I'm sure as soon as Brown tells him what to say, AP will issue a statement.
Think about it, AP called us stupid.

I yam what I yam

Telling commission what to say and how to vote

Will have to wait another day

...just sayin'...

It was a Spaulding Co Magistrate Judge that viewed the video and issued the warrant--Whitlow wasn't involved in the video viewing,unless reporting has been incorrect.

Whitlow must have felt the same when he first presented the video to FC judges who chose not to review for political reasons. The judge from Spaulding obviously thought there was probable cause after review.

Don't think it was wise for GD getting involved in this conversation either. He's trying too hard cowtowing to the Tea Party enthusiasts if he hasn't seen the video. If AP is guilty of putting his hands on her, no matter how mundane, his associates could be toast if they publicly support him.

This is about as newsworthy and the Paula Deen event


PTC Observer's picture


AP hires the same lawyers that helped Steve Brown defend his ethics charge.

SB and the commission approve payment to defend AP because AP was defending the county's new GOP leadership.

(just kidding)

Anybody who has had dealings with Marilyn Watts (political or business) will attest that this woman is nuts! I don't know what happened at this meeting (and evidently neither do any of you guys that have already I guess I am just as qualified to spout off as anybody else) ; but I know Marilyn Watts is a liar and a very troubled individual with a terrible temper. She is NO lady! This woman has taken liberties with the truth every time she has a problem with anybody....and she has had problems with lots and lots of folks. I only talked to one person who was there, but he said that the fault was entirely Marilyn's and I trust him more than most. It will be interesting, but I strongly suspect that this is another publicity stunt by Watts.

If all you say is true and well known, then that should make people more weary of associating in any way.
She may have even taken the papers without asking, but that doesn't give anyone the right to physically touch another.

The detective and Spaulding judge both saw physical contact on video so they agree on probable cause.

Since Walmart, Target, Sears, Kmart, etc. have dropped Paula Deen products from their stores for using the "N'' word, I'm wondering if they will do the same for all the tapes and CD's made by Rap and Hip Hop artists using the same word?

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