01/03/05 — Jones gets magistrate job after all

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Jones gets magistrate job after all

By Jack Stephens
Published in News on January 3, 2005 1:58 PM

A veteran Wayne County magistrate who was not reappointed got his old job back over the weekend.

R. Allen Jones returned to work after magistrate candidate Tim Brannan decided not to take the job.

"I just decided to turn down the offer," Brannan said Sunday. "It boiled down to where I wanted to spend the next two years."

Brannan, a teacher and coach at Wayne Christian School, explained that he had two sons, a freshman and a sophomore, who play on his varsity baseball and junior varsity basketball teams.

"It was a tempting offer," Brannan said, "but I decided that I could make a bigger difference here than at the magistrate's office."

He also explained that the magistrate's job is shift work, and he wanted to be available for his sons.

Magistrates in Wayne County work eight-hour shifts around the clock seven days a week.

Brannan also said the publicized turmoil in the magistrate's office over the last two years was not a factor in his decision to withdraw his application.

Superior Court Judge Jerry Braswell had announced the appointment last week of Brannan to replace Jones. He also announced the appointment of two new magistrates to replace Chief Magistrate Remona McIver, a 17-year veteran, and Sandra Castle, who had served four years.

Two years ago, Jones was the center of controversy during the appointment process. J. Robert Forsythe, a magistrate who was not reappointed in 2003, filed a complaint, alleging that Jones had abused his authority.

Braswell conducted a formal hearing on the complaint, and Mrs. McIver and Mrs. Castle, among others, testified against Jones. Braswell ruled that there was not enough evidence to remove Jones.

The two other new magistrates, William Buchanan and James Myles, were sworn in Saturday with the seven holdovers.

Two other veteran magistrates, Glenn Sloan and J. Nelson Kornegay, retired during the last term. Their part-time positions were combined to make a full-time position, Braswell said.