DeKalb sheriff suspends himself after indecency arrest

May 24, 2014 - Milton, Ga: DeKalb County Sheriff Jeffrey L. Mann hosts a news conference about Operation Safe DeKalb at the DeKalb County Sheriff's Office Administration Building Thursday afternoon, January 29, 2015, in Decatur, Ga.. PHOTO / JASON GETZ

Credit: Jason Getz

Credit: Jason Getz

DeKalb County Sheriff Jeff Mann, who was arrested for allegedly exposing himself in Piedmont Park, is suspending himself for one week.

"I cannot ask my employees to abide by a code of conduct unless I am willing to subject myself to it as well," Mann wrote in a Tuesday email to DeKalb Sheriff's Office employees. "In fact, I must be held to an even higher standard."

Mann wrote in the email that he imposed on himself the maximum penalty for the infraction of engaging in conduct that "has a tendency to destroy public respect ... or destroy confidence in the operations of the county service." The normal penalty for this infraction is written counseling.

His suspension begins Saturday and lasts until June 4.

DeKalb Sheriff's defense says he won't respond Tuesday

Mann wrote he will donate the equivalent of one week’s pay to charities to be determined in the near future.

Mann said he's not admitting guilt to the city of Atlanta ordinance violations of indecency and obstruction.

An incident report said a police officer saw Mann exposing himself in Piedmont Park on May 6, and then Mann ran away when the officer identified himself and turned his flashlight on Mann.

“The mere fact of placing myself in a position to be arrested is sufficient reason for this self-imposed discipline,” Mann wrote. “I cannot, in good faith, fail to take responsibility for the negative and unwanted criticism brought to this great agency and the county, and I apologize to each of you. You deserve a leader who takes responsibility for his actions.”

Besides the charges, Mann is also being investigated by a panel appointed by Gov. Nathan Deal. Based on the panel's findings, the governor could suspend him for up to 90 days, order an additional investigation by the GBI and ask the DeKalb District Attorney to initiate proceedings to remove the sheriff from office.

Mann and his attorney are asking a judge to stop the investigation, saying Mann isn't accused of any misconduct in his official capacity as sheriff.

Exclusive to subscribers: Read the full story.

MYAJC.COM: REAL JOURNALISM. REAL LOCAL IMPACT.

The AJC's Mark Niesse keeps you updated on the latest happenings in DeKalb County government and politics. You'll find more on myAJC.com, including these stories:

Never miss a minute of what's happening in DeKalb politics. Subscribe to myAJC.com.

In Other News