published Saturday, November 20th, 2010

GBI arrests Catoosa official on theft charges

by Andy Johns
  • photo
    Staff File Photo by Rebecca Reid/Chattanooga Times Free Press The Georgia Bureau of Investigation has charged former Fort Oglethorpe building inspector Mark Lindsay with three counts of felony theft by receiving stolen property and one count of felony theft by taking.

FORT OGLETHORPE -- A former city official and Catoosa County Commission candidate is accused of receiving vehicles, jewelry, sunglasses and clothes from a woman who allegedly stole $138,000 from the antique mall where she worked.

City building inspector Mark Lindsay turned himself in to authorities Friday after the Georgia Bureau of Investigation announced that he had been charged with three counts of felony theft by receiving stolen property and one count of felony theft by taking.

The cell phone number on Lindsay's campaign material from his failed run for the County Commission was not working Friday morning.

Jerry Scott, special agent in charge for the GBI, said Lindsay's case was linked to a Fort Oglethorpe police investigation.

Earlier this month, Fort Oglethorpe police arrested Deborah Ann Holt, 48, of Ringgold, Ga., and charged her with forgery, embezzlement and theft for reportedly siphoning off $138,625 from the Gateway Mall on Cloud Springs Road, where she worked as a manager.

Holt was released on bond shortly after being taken into custody.

Lindsay made bond quickly on Friday and was released from custody, officials said.

Lindsay and Holt had a relationship, according to investigators, but authorities would not discuss the nature of the connection other than to say they were not family members.

Authorities said Holt gave Lindsay numerous gifts, including cars, a four-wheel all-terrain vehicle, sunglasses, clothes and jewelry.

Under the law, theft by receiving includes instances where a "reasonable person knew or should have known" the items he received were ill-gotten.

Lindsay resigned from his post as the city's building inspector Thursday night, according to City Manager Ron Goulart. He said he was surprised by the news and explained that the charges don't have anything to do with Lindsay's work for the city.

Lindsay's resignation letter did not give any reasons for his departure, Goulart said.

"I felt pretty comfortable that it doesn't involve the city, any city property or anything to do with the city at all," Goulart said.

Goulart said Lindsay had worked for the city in various roles for 14 years and had a "perfect record."

Contact staff writer Andy Johns at ajohns@timesfree or call 423-757-6324.

about Andy Johns...

Andy began working at the Times Free Press in July 2008 as a general assignment reporter before focusing on Northwest Georgia and Georgia politics in May of 2009. Before coming to the Times Free Press, Andy worked for the Anniston Star, the Rome News Tribune and the Campus Carrier at Berry College, where he graduated with a communications degree in 2006. He is pursuing a master’s degree in business administration at the University of Tennessee ...

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raybarker444 said...

Poorly written article. The first paragraph was talking about a female and then went to Mark Lindsey. I was trying to figure out if Mark was a female. Very confusing.

November 20, 2010 at 6:34 a.m.
catoosares said...

Every time this story gets reported it gets bigger. Now he received cars, sunglasses, clothes and jewelery and he was having a affair with the woman? That's crazy! I am so surprised at the lack of professionalism from the detective in Fort Oglethorpe when she said she could not speculate on the relationship between Mr.Lindsay and Ms.Holt and then when led by the reporter on one of the news channels she did just that. People are innocent until proven guilty but in this area that is so not true. You are guilty no matter what. No one knows the whole story except the people involved. I would not think that he would put his career in the trash just for sunglasses, clothes, jewelery and cars. I mean my gosh, she only stole 134,000 dollars, do you not think she kept most of that for herself? No, because people love to see people at their lowest. That is what gets people to tune into the news and buy newspapers. By next week it will probably be built up to so much more than it is today. Shame!

November 21, 2010 at 2:06 p.m.
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