Court-ordered apology letters were due Monday from two former Washington County commissioners.
The first, from Larry Steinel, was found lacking by a current commissioner. The second, from John Grimes, was turned in to a probation officer and not immediately available.
County and court officials said they had not received Grimes' letter, but Grimes said late Monday the letter had been delivered to his probation officer. The probation officer confirmed that he received the letter Monday, and said it would be delivered to the county courthouse today.
As part of an Oct. 26 plea deal that kept Grimes and fellow ex-commissioner Larry Steinel from serving any jail time, each was required to write a letter of apology to the residents of the county and to the current commissioners for taking public files and having their computer hard drives wiped clean after being voted out of office in 2008. Failing to meet the terms of the plea agreement, or failing to successfully complete 12 months of probation could have resulted in the court imposing 60 days of jail that was suspended.
Grimes and Steinel each pleaded guilty to one second-degree misdemeanor charge of obstructing official business.
In addition to other fines and sanctions, Grimes was sentenced to serve 60 days of electronically monitored house arrest and Steinel must serve 1,100 hours of community service.
The charge carried a maximum possible penalty of 90 days in jail and a $750 fine.
Current Commissioner Cora Marshall said Monday that she was less than impressed with Steinel's apology, in which he claimed he was "computer illiterate" but said that was no excuse for "my mistake during the last few days of my term." In the letter, which was published in the Oct. 30 edition of The Marietta Times, Steinel said he hoped to be judged more for his years of community service and positive acts.
Marshall said when she and fellow Commissioner Steve Weber took office they had none of the information needed to follow through on ongoing county projects.
"This had nothing to do with ignorance," Marshall said. "He and John relied on a company providing computer services to the county to remove information from those computers. All public records are sacred and supposed to be maintained and easily accessible."