Long before a jury found an executive guilty last week in a DeKalb County bribery scheme, his name came up during the trial of DeKalb CEO Burrell Ellis.
Prosecutors alleged that Ellis tried to give favorable treatment to Brian Domalik, a former manager at a janitorial services company who knew a teacher at Ellis’ daughters’ school.
In a recorded conversation, Ellis instructed a county employee to contact Domalik after a competing company won a county contract Aug. 28, 2012.
“I want you to help Brian Domalik,” Ellis said in the Oct. 25, 2012, conversation with former DeKalb Purchasing Director Kelvin Walton. “I think he’s straight up.”
District Attorney Robert James used this conversation as an example of Ellis misusing the power of his elected position.
“Instead of just saying, ‘You know Brian, I don’t get involved in that, we don’t trade favors,’ he goes and has a conversation with Kelvin Walton,” James said in his closing argument. “What he says is, ‘I want you call him, I want you to help him.’ How is that appropriate?”
Ellis testified that Domalik didn’t give him a campaign contribution or receive special treatment. While Domalik’s company, Rite Way Services, lost one county contract in 2012, it continued to work for the county until 2014 under a separate contract for maintaining several county buildings.
“When we’re talking about a quid pro quo, that’s a promise to do something for someone in exchange for something else,” Ellis testified Oct. 2, 2014. “I never asked Kelvin to give him any special favors.”
Domalik was one of three Rite Way Services executives convicted for arranging payments to a former DeKalb employee who used his position to steer millions of dollars of contracts to the company. They haven’t been sentenced yet.
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