UPDATE: Former Jones Co. Fire Council president out on bond

Published: Sep. 14, 2021 at 1:06 PM CDT
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JONES COUNTY, Miss. (WDAM) - The former president of the Jones County Fire Council is out on bond.

According to the Jones County Sheriff’s Department, William Lee Garrick was released from jail on Friday, Sept. 10, on a $60,000 bond.

Though he’s currently out of jail, we’re told the case is far from over.

“The case file will be turned over to the Jones County District Attorney’s Office for review and then it will be turned over to the Jones County Grand Jury to determine if there’s enough evidence to go to court,” said Jones County Sheriff’s Department Chief Deputy Mitch Sumrall.

When it comes to a timeline, JCSD officials say they expect the process to move quickly.

“It shouldn’t be too long because the case has been investigated for a while, so you know, it should all be coming together pretty quick,” Sumrall said.

Garrick, 42, was arrested on a charge of embezzlement on Tuesday, Aug. 31, and booked into the county jail around 10 a.m. On Wednesday, Sept. 1, Garrick was charged with two counts of embezzlement following his initial appearance in court. During his court appearance, Garrick requested a public defender saying he could not afford an attorney.

An exact amount of money embezzled has not yet been released; however, WDAM was told that deputies seized multiple items when executing a search warrant at Garrick’s personal residence.

“We don’t have any... still don’t have any firm figures,” said Jones County Fire Council Public Information Officer Dana Bumgardner. “They’re still in the process of going through our books and bank accounts and everything. But, you know, we do know that the amount, at least as far as we know it from law enforcement, is significant.”

Fire council officials say while they wait for more information, rebuilding the broken trust with the community is one of their top priorities.

“His actions have just really done a number on our community relations and everything that we do,” Bumgardner said.

This story will be updated when more information is provided.

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