Joe Dendy, who led the Cobb County Republican Party from 2011 to 2015, has been arrested and charged with molesting two boys in separate incidents occurring as far back as 2007.
Dendy, 71, is charged with child molestation and aggravated child molestation, both felonies, and is being held without bond in the county jail, according to jail records. The first charge stems from an alleged incident at Dendy’s home during the Christmas holidays in 2011, where Dendy inappropriately touched a 4-year-old boy who was sitting in his lap, according to a warrant taken out on Dendy late Thursday.
The boy disclosed the details of the incident in a forensic interview, with a now-20-year-old witness supporting the boy’s story, according to the warrant.
The other charge involves an earlier incident — sometime in 2007 or 2008 — that allegedly saw Dendy perform sex acts on a 12-year-old boy while the two were in Dendy’s home, according to the warrant.
Jail records show Dendy was arrested at 9 a.m. Friday at his home in west Cobb by deputies with the Cobb Sheriff’s office.
Dendy is being represented by William McKenney of Atlanta-based McKenney & Froelich.
“Mr. Dendy will plead not guilty to all charges and will commence his own independent investigation into the motivation and credibility of individuals now claiming acts which allegedly occurred over nine years ago and which were never reported to anyone,” McKenney said on behalf of Dendy in an email to the MDJ.
First elected Cobb GOP chair in 2011, Dendy served two consecutive two-year terms before term limits forced him to step down in 2015. His vice-chair for all four years, Rose Wing, was elected to succeed him in March 2015.
Wing said she received a call from the sheriff’s office about the arrest.
“I’m shocked upon hearing the news,” Wing said. “Right now I know no details. Nothing. I feel it would be inappropriate for me to make any comments, one, that I don’t know any details, and No. 2, it’s a pending case at this time, and it would be just highly inappropriate for me to make any comments not knowing any details and with a pending case at this point.”
Dendy following his term as Cobb GOP chair continued to work with the Georgia Republican Party, where he was the state director of party development. Dendy’s name was not listed on the state party’s website Friday, and a woman answering the phone there Friday afternoon told the MDJ that “he doesn’t work here anymore.”
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