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First APS educator turns herself in
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First APS educator turns herself in

First APS educator turns herself in
Photo Credit: Fulton County Jail
Tameka Goodson is the first APS educator to surrender on the indictment that alleges cheating on the CRCT exam. She is charged with racketeering and making false statements.

First APS educator turns herself in

The AJC's Mike Morris contributed to this story

The 35 educators indicted in the Atlanta Public Schools cheating scandal have until the end of the day Tuesday to turn themselves in.

Tameka Goodson, Donald Bullock and Theresia Copeland did not wait that long.

Goodson was booked into the Fulton County jail at 12:30 a.m. Tuesday. Her bond is set at $200,000. Goodson is an instructional coach at Kennedy Middle School. She is charged with racketeering and false statements and writings.

Investigators say former Kennedy Middle School principal Lucious Brown ordered Goodson and three others to erase answers on the CRCT exam. Brown didn’t actually change any answers but watched three carry “out his directive.”

“Dr. Tameka Goodson denied any participation in or knowledge of cheating. The GBI confronted Ms. Goodson with evidence of her involvement in cheating and advised her that lying to a law enforcement agent was a felony, but if she told the truth she would be offered immunity. Goodson said she wanted to "make a statement," but wanted an attorney present. Goodson was given that opportunity, but failed to return with her attorney,” according to the investigators’ report.

There is no word yet on Goodson’s first court appearance.

Around 6 a.m., Donald Bullock, a testing coordinator at Usher-Collier Heights Elementary charged with racketeering, false statements or writings and false swearing, arrived at the jail, accompanied by his attorney.  And then about an hour later,  Benteen Elementary testing coordinator Theresia Copeland walked into the jail. She is charged with racketeering, false statements or writings  and theft by taking.  Bond for both has been set at one million.

Everyone is still waiting on the big fish to walk into the Fulton County jail. There were earlier reports that surfaced former superintendent Dr. Beverly Hall was actually in Jamaica. But Channel 2 Action News reports that is not the case.

Some of the educators planned on reporting to the jail Monday, but paperwork is holding that up.

Many of the 35 people have never been indicted before. Their lawyers are working to reduce their bond.

"It's not uncommon to negotiate a bond and see if everybody can agree on an amount, that's what I'm trying to do now. And that's what the other attorneys are trying to do, the same thing," Attorney Bob Rubin said.

Rubin represents former Dobbs Elementary Principal Dana Evans and former Stanton Elementary Principal Willie Davenport.

Rubin said if their attorneys can't negotiate a bond, then the defendants will surrender Tuesday, likely early in the morning, to make the 11 a.m. hearing Tuesday.

"I've spoken to an assistant district attorney from Fulton County about what's going to happen tomorrow and the truth is, no one really knows," Rubin said.

One down. 34 more to go. Tameka Goodson, an instructional coach at Kennedy Middle School, turned herself into the Fulton County jail early this morning. What’s next for her and why none of the educators have given themselves up just yet.

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