A former Darien police lieutenant who was under felony indictment in the theft of drugs pleaded guilty recently to a single misdemeanor count of violating his oath of office as a public officer, court records show.
Nicholas “Nick” O. Roundtree entered his plea about two weeks ago before Superior Court Judge Glenn A. Cheney. The judge sentenced Roundtree to three years probation and ordered him to pay a $1,000 fine, court records show.
The other charges of theft by conversion, theft by taking and another count of violation of an oath by a public officer were dismissed, records show.
Because Cheney sentenced Roundtree under the first offender statute, his criminal record will be cleared once he completes his probation without re-offending.
Roundtree was an investigator with the Darien Police Department until late 2014 when the Georgia Bureau of Investigation completed a probe of the suspected disappearance of drugs from the department’s evidence room. The GBI estimated that $1,500 in narcotics had been removed from the evidence room over a four-year period and Roundtree was subsequently charged with theft by taking. Darien Police Chief Donnie Howard, who had requested the GBI probe, placed Roundtree on administrative leave. Soon after, Roundtree, who was the custodian of evidence, resigned from the force.
A grand jury later indicted Roundtree on two counts each of theft and violating his oath of office, records show.
Officials could not say where Roundtree is working now, but he had worked as a car salesman in Brunswick after his resignation.
Roundtree was charged not long after his investigation of a middle school band director resulted in child molestation charges.
James Raymond Clark Jr. lived in Darien but taught music at Jane Macon Middle School in Glynn County. Roundtree began investigating Clark after an Atlanta man accused Clark of molesting him in 2000 and 2001 when he was 12 and 13 years old. Because of the statute of limitations, no charges could be filed on those allegations.
Clark was charged in March 2014 with aggravated child molestation and criminal intent to commit statutory rape. As soon as he was confronted by officers, Clark resigned and wrote a letter saying he would not return to the school.
Just over a year after his arrest, Clark pleaded guilty to enticing a child for indecent purposes and was sentenced to 20 years probation and ordered to register as a sex offender.
The GBI registry shows Clark is still living in Darien.