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Atlanta School Cheating Scandal: First suspects in cheating scandal surrender to authorities

Tameka Goodson, educator indicted in Atlanta school cheating scandal, surrendering at Fulton County Jail early on April 2, 2013, the deadline set by prosecutors for all defendants in the scandal to do same WGCL-TV/CBS

Tameka Goodson, educator indicted in Atlanta school cheating scandal, surrendering at Fulton County Jail early on April 2, 2013, the deadline set by prosecutors for all defendants in the scandal to do same
Tameka Goodson, educator indicted in Atlanta school cheating scandal, surrenders at Fulton County Jail on Tuesday, April 2, 2013
WGCL

(AP) ATLANTA - The first of more than 30 defendants expected to surrender Tuesday in Atlanta's school cheating scandal have begun turning themselves in in to authorities.

Fulton County Jail records show that Tameka Goodson was in custody early Tuesday after being booked into jail on charges of racketeering and making false statements and writings. Goodson was an instructional coach at Kennedy Middle School.

Thirty-five educators within the Atlanta school system, including former Superintendent Beverly Hall, were named in a 65-count indictment last week that alleges a broad conspiracy to cheat, conceal cheating and retaliate against whistleblowers in an effort to bolster student test scores and, as a result, receive bonuses for improved student performance.

Prosecutors set a Tuesday deadline for all defendants to surrender to authorities.

Lawyers for some of the 35 defendants expected to surrender by Tuesday say their bonds are unreasonably high.

Hurl Taylor, who represents test coordinator Donald Bullock, said his client's $1 million bond amounts to cruel and unusual punishment. Bullock was among the first defendants to surrender at the Fulton County Jail early Tuesday.

Warren Fortson, who represents testing coordinator Theresia Copeland, described her as a 56-year-old grandmother. He said the $1 million bond in her case is unnecessary.

In a chaotic scene outside the jail Tuesday morning, the lawyers said it wasn't clear when their clients would be able to request lower bonds.

  • Crimesider Staff

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