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Cops grab lawyer for whizzing on a tree

F’ville officers had tavern parking lot staked out at closing

A local attorney and leader in the Fayette County Republican Party was arrested early Sunday morning for public urination outside a bar in downtown Fayetteville.

David Studdard, 48, told The Citizen that he did urinate outside just before 2 a.m., but he was under the cover of trees and it was dark with no one else around at the time. Studdard, himself a former police officer and the husband of county Superior Court Clerk Sheila Studdard, said he was surprised that he was arrested on the charge instead of being given a citation.

“I was a cop for 20 years and I don’t think I ever took someone to jail on that charge unless there was a companion charge with it,” Studdard said.

Studdard said he had contact with several officers minutes prior to his arrest as they responded to the Olde Courthouse Tavern to investigate a report of a fight on the premises. Studdard said he was not involved in the fight, but he cooperated with the officers and answered their questions

Studdard said after speaking with the officers, he spoke with another person in the area before heading to his truck in the rear parking lot of the tavern. While on the way, Studdard said he saw a former client who he felt was in no shape to drive home, and he offered her a ride home or a chance to call a cab or a friend to pick her up.

Before they had a chance to do that however, Studdard went to relieve himself and after coming back to his truck noted the same group of police officers who had responded to the fight had reappeared and decided to take him to jail on the public urination charge.

Studdard said he asked one of the officers if he could speak with a supervisor because he didn’t understand why that offense warranted going to jail. That same officer, however, was the supervisor, Studdard noted, adding that he complied with the officers as they arrested him and transported him to the Fayette County Jail.

Studdard noted that he did not expose himself to anyone else during the incident, and that had he stayed home to watch the ACC championship football game instead of the going to the tavern, the incident wouldn’t have happened.

While he had initially planned to pay the court fine without challenging it, he admits to being curious about how many times Fayetteville police arrest suspects who are charged solely with a misdemeanor count of public urination.

At least one of the officers was watching the Tavern parking lot area when he was parked across the street in the county government complex parking lot, Studdard said. That was because police were watching some other people who had left the Tavern and were too intoxicated to drive, and officers wanted to make sure they did not get behind the wheel, according to police spokesman Steve Crawshaw.

When the officers approached Studdard’s vehicle, they were worried he might try to drive off, and so ultimately he was arrested for the charge of public urination, Crawshaw said.

Studdard also recalled that about two weeks ago he had cross-examined one of the officers in a DUI case in municipal court, but he couldn’t say that had anything to do with why he was arrested instead of issued a citation.

“It’s the first time in my 48 years that I’ve ever been arrested for anything,” Studdard said.



I would be willing to bet that there is more to this story. They could have gotten him on a DUI. VERY DIGNIFIED INDEED.

I have come up on at least 3 or 4 golfer attempting to pee on the trees on the Braelinn golf course, since the public path crosses the golf cart path and is surrounded by houses this is ridiculous. Maybe next time I should call 911?? It is ridiculous since there are lots of bathrooms on the these folks are just RUDE

I recently purchased a new book titled " Attorneys Above the Law " by Dennis Schuelke; I suggest those reading this, consider purchasing several copies as gifts for others. :-)

Sorry, but those words should never, ever be uttered as you exit a tavern with a full bladder at 2AM. I think it's written in the Book of Scotch, Ch. 32, pg. 6, para. 7-1. 2nd Edition, pub. 1963.

I hope this isn't just a peeview of things to come. I mean preview. Just wait till Twisted Taco gets up to full speed up above. I shudder to think.

My favorite part of the article is the fact that Studdard is a leader in the Fayette County Republican Party. The organization must be very proud. Perhaps a new membership flyer can be circulated with Studdard as the poster boy.

My guess is he should be thankful to FCPD that he is not up for a DUI... 2 AM leaving The Tavern and Whizzing in the woods - Give me a break. Pay the 'Whizz fine' and be thankful you are not Joe Citizen, as I guarantee we would not have been so lucky.

SPQR's picture

what criteria have to be met for it to called -public-urination?

RKS's picture

There is always more to the story.

ptctaxpayer's picture

Now that there's funny ! Funnier than a middleaged drunk pissing on the courthouse square is that none of the Fayette snobs will say a word. And yeah--- no remorse, Mr. Studdard ? "Family Values Party", my ass.

Git Real's picture


<em><strong>Stupid can't be fixed. We can only vote him out</strong></em>

My son has been dieing to pee outside since his grandfather took him on a long road trip and let him pee in the woods along a stretch of deserted highway a few years back. Guess this article will show him he can get arrested for it.

Just pay the dang fine and in a few weeks people will be laughing about it.
Cop may have been a Georgia fan, lol

If this was the average person and not a local attorney with a spouse working in the court system, this wouldnt be newsworthy.

In a more normal community with reasonably liberal standards, and where the cops have better things to do, an incident like this would have been treated with liberality. Studdard might have been chided by the cop who observed him, but no case would have been made. Moreover, in a more normal community than ours, there would be a realization that a jury composed of reasonable people would not convict, so why make an arrest and bring a case? After all, no harm was done, and it is well known that aging men develop an enlarged prostate which can cause them to have sudden, irresistible urges to relieve themselves.

That would be the normal view of reasonable people.

But we do not live in a normal community with reasonable people. We have these hyper-conservative zealots who want to make everything a crime and want judges who are tough on crime. They have all flocked to the Republican party and taken it over. Studdard is a leader of that group. So that makes sympathy for him hard to come by. He may be getting his comeuppance, as may many other conservatives over time.

So his alleged crime (which may be classified as the sexual offense of public indecency) is said to be a misdemeanor. That could still bring on one year in jail, from the kind of tough-on-crime judge conservatives like to see. Not only could there be the stigma of a sexual offense, but there can be repercussions on traveling abroad, as travel to many countries, including Canada, requires the completion of a questionnaire where past convictions must be disclosed and can be cause for not being allowed in.

He who fights by the sword perishes by the sword. It’s often a good lesson for conservatives to get a taste of their own medicine. This man’s best hope is to find a prosecutor, judge, or jury more liberal than the local Republicans for whom he has been a leader.

Unless there is something we don't some little girl standing nearby and seeing the guy.

Just a tad overboard with enforcement here in my humble opinion.

A citation, maybe....

highflyer2's picture

About a year ago I was approached by the manager of a local apartment complex about a "concerned" tenant that was being harassed by a Fayetteville police officer. It seemed like he had taken an interest in her and was making unexpected stops at her apartment at strange hours, even tapping on her bedroom window when she didn't come to the door. Now I had two choices, one was to report him to his superior officer or to go see him and explain to him that his "advances" were not welcome and to back off. I have to admit that I did the second, thinking that I was doing what was appropriate considering that I too was "walking the blue line".

Oh if only I had that to do over! Things have changed and these guys are out to make brownie points no matter who's lives they ruin. Even Dolly Parton said that she enjoys her home because she can walk outside and pee off her front porch if she wants to! But oh no, not in "Fayetteville", that's a sin!

I am sorry what happened to you David and I am sure that you are smart enough to ask that this case be transferred out of this county.......try Spaulding where the folks still know the difference between "common sense" and "stupid".

Gort's picture

Urine a lot of trouble buddy! Ha!

Well, well, look what we have here, a local attorney and leader in the Fayette County Republican Party arrested? I hope that was a tree trunk and not an elephant trunk he took a whiz on?

I like the way he complained to the officer and his supervisor. That makes him a pisser and a moaner!

Good thing he’s a lawyer, instead of a community organizer, or everyone in the bar would have been arrested!

I think he can beat the charges in court in any number of ways. I can see it now.

Your Honor, I’m an active leader in the Republican Party and was just making a public presentation on trickle down economics!

Or how about this?

Your Honor, I’m planning to run for Judge in Fayette County and was just showing the public my credentials!

Or how about this?

Your Honor, I had a few drinks and thought I saw former Commissioner Horgan smoking pot again. As an officer of the court I thought it was my duty to try and put it out!

Remember: If you think Social Security and Medicare are worth saving, vote for the Democrat.

SPQR's picture

I nominate you the winner of this Pi**ing contest

Gort's picture

Okay SPQR, here’s one more for you.

Your Honor, I’m an active leader in the Republican Party and was just wet fire testing my vaginal probe!

Remember: If you think Social Security and Medicare are worth saving, vote for the Democrat.

common tater's picture

Love the comments so far... While my experience tells me that Mr. Studdard probably wouldn't have been peeing on a tree downtown if he hadn't had a few too many it seems excessive to take him to jail for this violation. I would be interested to know how many other people Fville has taken to jail for this. I sincerely hope they didn't arrest him to "prevent" a DUI. Considering he was a cop and is a lawyer I'm sure he could have weaseled his way out of that....not too hard to do if you're not too drunk. Anyway, take it easy Fville...I think you're great but please, do something like enforce the speed limit on Hillsdale.

What about the drunk woman? Did they take her in or home or just leave her there? There is a lot more to this story.

Whizzing up a tree: Not as rare as journalistic integrity
Jonathan Swift once lamented that newspapers were often a good source to demonstrate and expose the "press soldiers" who, for the sake of good copy would rather write about a famous person falling off a bicycle than a prediction of the collapse of civilization. This moral lapse by newspaper writers is the result of a deficiency in their journalism (if any) education. This is the case with Mr. Munford's vamping a story about an immodest act of a lawyer/republican leader. As an aside, Is the crime of being a lawyer/republican a felony or misdemeanor?
Munford, due to a lack of good taste, coupled with the lack of the requisite talent to recognize the real story, completely yet purposefully misses the whole point of the "Whizzing" incident. The sine qua non of the arrest was the act of urinating in public (although it was pitch black outside) rather than a designated men's room.
Now let's substitute the place and time and persons of the "Whizzing" story. Dateline: Some woods in Fayette County. A homeless man identified as Doofus Dooley of Senoia was arrested Saturday night for "Whizzing" on a stalk of corn. End of story. We don't know, nor does it matter (as it does not mitigate or aggravate the act) if Dooley is married or what are his affiliations, if any. The corn is still wet. Though it seems to me that there are more pressing matters for the Fayette police to surveill, like say, rapists, burglars et al rather than the less than sensational mid-nite expulsion of one man's superfluities of his potations.
Then we get all these bloggers who sit around all day watching the mailbox for their monthly government stipend, wiling away their hours looking for something or someone to carp about. They missed their 15 minutes years ago and are trying to get it back through petty, shallow opinions written to a newspaper that prints just about any comments sent to them, provided the author signs his work, thereby adopting, practicing and enforcing the addage: Ridicule, assumptions and vamping is merely a tribute paid to the more intelligent in society by the mediocre who simply co-exist in it.
The Munford piece is a sad example of hitting below the intellect. This piece begs the question: Is the Citizen Newspaper a legitimate news outlet or just another "Tabloid" posing as one?
Submitted by Czarist, Counselor to Zeus, debunker of the Synoptic Gospels, Constantine scholar and all around good guy,who, by the way, did not use an in door facility until he was 16. OMG, I hope Mr. Munford doesn't read this.



This is a part of Fayetteville I haven't observed. Not too different from parts of the Atlanta ghetto or Hollywood Blvd. Such acts usually don't make the papers in other sections of our country. Too much information. I still think daytime Fayetteville is super! Message? No unequal treatment in Fayetteville ! Break the law - go to jail.

RKS's picture

Did anything ever become of this? Did he stay in the pokey, sit before a judge, pay a fine, sue them? Nosey people like me want to know.

ptctaxpayer's picture

Lawya Studdard probably got the Dollar treatment--- pre-trial nonsense, pay a fat fine to the clerks and go in to counseling for, I guess, incontinence control. Poor fella.

to never dine at the upstairs outdoor dining area at Twisted Taco going in right there, either.

NUK_1's picture

I heard he was pissed-off :) Sorry, couldn't resist.

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