Former Hart County commissioner R.C. Oglesby has been arrested and charged with sexual exploitation of children, an arrest warrant shows.
Oglesby, who was suspended from his District 1 seat by the governor in 2020 and then lost re-election in November, was arrested at his home on Winding Way in Hartwell on Wednesday, Feb. 3 around 3 p.m. by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation with assistance from the Hartwell Police Department. He was released on $15,000 bond.
An arrest warrant obtained by The Sun shows Oglesby has been charged with sexual exploitation of children.
The warrant alleges Oglesby possessed on Nov. 7, 2019, the day he and family members were arrested on racketeering charges, an image of a pre-pubescent female exposing her private parts.
Oglesby’s attorney, Bruce Harvey, emphatically denied the most recent “dastardly” allegations against his client.
“There is nothing that would be more out of character for R.C. Ogelsby than the current allegations,” Harvey told The Sun. “He is a well known member of this community, a well respected man of faith, and absolutely denies any such allegations before his fellow members of faith and before God. He looks forward to making sure that each and every person knows that he is categorically innocent of theses dastardly allegations.”
GBI officials said an electronic device belonging to Oglesby was seized during the “large-scale racketeering investigation” in 2019. During the follow up investigation, child pornography was discovered on a device belonging to Oglesby, according to a press release from the GBI.
Assistant police chief Stan Sayer told The Sun that Oglesby’s cellphone was seized during the raids for alleged racketeering in 2019 and that the GBI cyber unit just recently gained access to the phone and discovered child pornography on it.
A felony conviction for that charge can include a prison term between five and 20 years or a maximum fine of $100,000, or both. One of the penalties is the mandatory requirement to register as a sex offender upon conviction.
In his November 2019 arrest, prosecutors allege Oglesby was operating an organized crime scheme involving drug sales and SNAP benefits fraud. A grand jury indictment, which also charged several members of Oglesby’s family, charges him with multiple counts of theft by shoplifting for allegedly stealing items on multiple occasions from Hart County stores, three counts of financial transaction card theft or fraud and one count of violating the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.
The six-person, 45-count indictment details a system in which the businesses, Ludi’s Soul Food and R&D Carwash, “served as a front for illegal activity,” the indictment said.
His criminal court case for those charges is still pending in Hart County Superior Court.
Oglesby represented Hart County’s District 1 on the board of commissioners from 1989 until he lost re-election in 2020.
This investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information regarding this investigation can submit tips by calling 1-800-597-TIPS(8477), online at https://gbi.georgia.gov/submit-tips-online, or by downloading the See Something, Send Something mobile app.
ARDEO encourages citizens to report any suspicious drug activity via Facebook IM at @appalachianrdeo, 706-348-7410, or by contacting your local Sheriff’s Office or Police Department.