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Jolivette charges dropped

Albany Firefighter Roderick Jolivette is photographed in this Albany Herald file photo. Charges against Jolivette were dropped by the district attorney's office in Chattahoochee County Tuesday.

Albany Firefighter Roderick Jolivette is photographed in this Albany Herald file photo. Charges against Jolivette were dropped by the district attorney's office in Chattahoochee County Tuesday.

ALBANY, Ga. -- The charges against former Assistant Albany Fire Chief Roderick Jolivette have been dropped by an assistant district attorney assigned to the Chattahoochee County Superior Court, documents sent to The Herald Wednesday show.

Jolivette was indicted in September 2009 on charges of impersonating a police officer and speeding, following an August 2009 traffic stop near Cusseta.

Documents faxed to The Herald from the Howard J. Stiller law office late Wednesday afternoon show that a Chattahoochee County Superior Court Judge signed an order accepting a motion from Assistant District Attorney Don Kelly to drop the charges.

Stiller said Wednesday that he is grateful that the district attorney's office recognized that it was a "bad case," and took what he says is the proper action.

"To their credit, they finally understood what I've been saying for months, that this was a bad case from start to finish," Stiller said. "Bad cases are like spoiled milk, they just never get any better."

Stiller said he couldn't speak to the reasons why the district attorney filed the motion, but did say that he had concerns over procedures he says weren't followed to make the incident a "lawful" stop.

Jolivette, who has been suspended without pay since he was indicted in September 2009, is requesting to be reinstated to his job at the fire department immediately. Stiller said he sent a letter to City Attorney Nathan Davis and Albany Fire Chief James Carswell Wednesday announcing the dismissal of the charges and expressing "Mr. Jolivette's desire to get back to work."

Assistant City Manager Wes Smith said that Jolivette will be reinstated shortly.

"In light of the court's ruling, Mr. Jolivette will be reinstated as soon as possible," Smith said.

That could be as soon as Friday.

Jolivette is suing the city of Albany and Carswell in federal court for discrimination alleging that they retaliated against him for speaking out about the hiring process for deputy chief by demoting him from his assistant chief's position. This followed an alleged incident in which the city found that he misused AFD resources to benefit family members.

Filed April 29, city officials say they have yet to be served with the suit and a check of court records show there has been no new filings in the case since it was filed.