Chief Magistrate Judge Eddie Anderson of Tattnall County, Georgia, resigned from his job last week. You see, he was arrested for making a terroristic threat and violating his oath as a public officer.
But the reason for the altercation that led to the arrest is what’s really turning heads. Because like a children’s book, it all turns boils down to picking vegetables from a garden.
As reported by Law360:
Anderson, who served as a magistrate judge for 14 years, said that he hadn’t stolen anything from the man’s property but was given permission to pick the peas. He’d stopped at the property to inquire about potentially buying some corn he’d seen growing in a garden there.
“I’ve never bought anything from him,” Anderson said. “This was my first time over there. I had never been on his property, and I wouldn’t have went in if I hadn’t seen that he had some pretty corn over there, and I wanted to buy some.”
When it turned out that the owner of the property wasn’t home, Anderson said he spoke with one of the man’s relatives and told them that a crop of peas growing in the garden seemed like they were ready to be picked. With permission from the relative, Anderson went home to get a bucket to pick them for himself.
But the garden owner went all farmer McGregor on him, insisting the judge didn’t have permission to pick the peas and actually stole them. Anderson reacted… poorly to the accusations.
When the man accused him of having stolen the peas, Anderson said that he told the man, “If you meet me out there in the middle of the road, I’ll kick your ass.”
“I shouldn’t have said what I said,” Anderson said, but he added that he would not have “dared” to steal any peas.
And that’s where the criminal charges came in.
Now that’s he’s done with being a judge, Anderson also says he has no interest in returning to legal practice. Perhaps some farming is in the cards.