Judge hears arguments on call for sanctions in ethics commission saga

Fulton County Judge Ural Glanville heard arguments, but did not immediately rule, on whether top state officials should be sanctioned for failing to turn over evidence in a high-profile whistleblower lawsuit.

In a nearly four-hour hearing, Glanville probed whether either the Attorney General’s Office or state ethics commission director Holly LaBerge violated any law in failing to turn over evidence in former commission director Stacey Kalberman’s case.

Glanville said he should have a decision by the end of next week.

Kalberman’s attorneys never received a memo LaBerge wrote in July 2012 detailing pressure and alleged threats she said were made by top aides of Gov. Nathan Deal just a week before the commission was to consider complaints against his 2010 campaign.

The memo contained references to those texts, but they were not given to Kalberman’s side, either.

“This was a pattern of concealing,” Kalberman attorney Kim Worth said.

Now, Glanville must decide whether that decision broke the law and, if so, what he should do about it.

“Folks put their professional reputations on the line when you play fast and loose with the discovery rules,” Glanville said.