Faces drug charges
Subject of Grantville ‘bounty’ scandal arrested
by Clay Neely and Wes Mayer
The man who was the subject of the recent texting scandal that led to the resignation of former Grantville Police Chief Doug Jordan was arrested in his home Tuesday.
Leon Buchannan III, the man arrested, was the target of an alleged bounty placed by Jordan in a series of text messages sent to Grantville Police officers last year. Jordan accused Buchannan of dealing drugs in Grantville, but Buchannan denied the allegations.
On Tuesday, however, authorities with the Meriwether County Sheriff’s Office placed a warrant for the arrest of Buchannan on charges of trafficking cocaine, illegal drugs, marijuana or methamphetamine.
Because Buchannan lived in Coweta County, Coweta County Sheriff’s Office authorities served the warrant and arrested him in his home on Church Street in Grantville, according to Lt. Col. Jimmy Yarbrough with the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office.
Buchannan was then transported to the Meriwether County Jail where he is being held without bond.
Buchannan served a year in prison on drug charges in 2008, but, according to an interview with news staff with Atlanta’s WSB TV, stated that he had stayed out of the drug game since his release.
"The past is the past, you know,” Buchannan said. “Everybody makes mistakes."
Prior to Buchannan’s arrest on Tuesday, Grantville Council Member Barham Lundy had stated that Buchannan was the subject of harassment by Grantville Police authorities – repeatedly being stopped by officers.
Lundy initially said Buchannan was targeted as a drug dealer, even though drugs were never found. “He hasn’t been convicted of any crime. He works every day,” Lundy said. While Jordan is not surprised to learn of Buchannan’s arrest, he is ultimately disappointed with the circumstances surrounding the investigation.
“Because this was an ongoing federal investigation, I wasn’t comfortable discussing it with the media,” Jordan said in an interview with The Newnan Times-Herald.
“It’s a shame that the city of Grantville has two or three leaders who may have protected this suspect from law enforcement,” Jordan said. “As a result, I have been slandered along with the Grantville Police Department by the news media and by these officials.”
Because of the political nature of the relationship between the Grantville City Council and the police department, Jordan feels that even more changes are on the horizon.
“Any time local law enforcement gets close to these people we are chastised by the city leaders and that’s why Grantville has experienced this revolving door of law enforcement,” Jordan said.
And because of this relationship, many of Grantville’s police officers are now planning their exits from the department, according to Jordan.
Jordan feels that during his tenure as police chief was a positive one, with the primary role of his police department rooted in keeping the community safe from drugs and crime – creating and maintaining an environment where families could feel comfortable raising their children.
“At least, that’s what it used to be about,” Jordan said. “It's time the citizens of Grantville, white and black, stand up and together and make some very needed changes in their city's leadership this November. It’s the only way to get their city back on track.”