Mayoral candidate Kathy Harvey is not the only candidate in the Conyers elections with a past run-in with the law.
Tony Adams, candidate for the city council District 1 Post 2 seat currently held by Chris Bowen, was arrested for possession of cocaine in Nov. 2003 on Milstead Avenue, according to Rockdale County court documents.
Adams, then 26 years old, was initially charged with a Violation of the Georgia Controlled Substance Act felony and three misdemeanors related to driving under the influence, but the misdemeanors were later dropped.
He pleaded not guilty in May 2004 in superior court and later entered a guilty plea in June 2004 under the first offender act, which offers leniency to offenders with no previous criminal record and allowed him to avoid jail time. Instead he was sentenced to five years probation, a $2,500 fine plus court fees and six months of work release. Upon completion of his sentence requirements, he was discharged in July 2009 and the felony conviction was struck from his record.
"This discharge may not be used to disqualify a person in any application for employment or appointment to office in either the private or public sector," states the order of discharge and dismissal signed by Judge Sidney Nation.
When asked about the charge, Adams said he did not feel it reflected on his ability to be a city councilman.
He said, "I made a mistake. It was six years ago. I think it was a good eye opener. Since then I’ve become married, started a family, become more involved in the community… It kick-started the path I’ve gone down since, which has been to become responsible."
"It wasn’t a secret or anything," he added. "People were aware of my circumstances and I received a lot of support."
Adams said a clerical error had left his name off the voter registration list and in an effort to ensure that the city could not challenge his candidacy and that his name would remain on the ballot, Adams filed a civil equity lawsuit on Oct. 12 in Rockdale superior court.
Conyers City Manager Tony Lucas said the city had worked to make sure Adams' name would be included on the ballot for the Nov. 3 election.