Umbach rehired by Decatur County Sheriff’s Office

Published 11:14 am Thursday, October 2, 2014




Former Decatur County Sheriff’s Office deputy Robert Wade Umbach has been rehired by the Sheriff’s Office to perform maintenance work.

Umbach is one of the four indicted defendants in a federal case involving an incident at BikeFest 2012 along with DCSO captain Elizabeth Croley, deputy Christopher Kines and former Grady County Sheriff’s Office deputy Wiley Griffin, IV.

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“I hired him because he’s a deputy sheriff falsely accused,” DCSO Sheriff Wiley Griffin said.

While the case is currently under investigation, Umbach cannot perform deputy duties, Griffin said.

“Neither can (Kines) or (Croley),” he added.

Kines and Croley were assigned to desk duty for the remainder of the investigation when indictments were released on July 9.

Umbach had worked at the University of North Georgia-Gainesville campus as a campus police officer and maintenance worker following his time as a DCSO deputy. Griffin said Umbach moved back to Decatur County to be closer to his family.

He has been an employee of the DCSO for about a month, Griffin said.

Umbach, Kines, Croley and Griffin, IV, were charged with the deprivation of rights under the color of law, false reporting and tampering with a witness victim or informant. The violations stem from the deputies allegedly beating a BikeFest 2012 attendee and altering evidence to conceal the incident.

The four defendants are slated to appear in federal court in Albany during the January 2015 term.