Home » NEWS » Pickering issues demand to Judge for program mismanagement

Pickering issues demand to Judge for program mismanagement



JACKSON — Circuit Judge Billy Joe Landrum of the 18th Circuit Court District has not been following state law in administering a Jones County Community Services Program for offenders coming through his court, according to the State Auditor’s Office.

Landrum created the program in 1997 and has managed the account since 2005.

“The financial management by Judge Landrum does not conform to state law,” State Auditor Stacy Pickering said.

Pickering’s office has issued a demand against Landrum for $313,726.73.

Acting on an official complaint filed with his office, the Auditor’s investigation shows $4,699.52 in fuel purchases; $82,637.77 for vehicle purchases and $197,439.50 in courtroom security officers’ salaries and employer salary expenses were paid from the Community Services Program account but not associated with the program. One or more vehicles belonging to the program were utilized for private travel. The mileage and usage costs for the specific trips have been calculated by the Auditor to be $4,605.94.

The Jones County Community Services Program allows offenders to pay extra fines to perform public work instead of being incarcerated. The extra funds deposited into the program made it self-sustaining.

“While the program has merit as an alternative to costly incarceration of offenders, Judge Landrum did not use accounting practices that must be followed when dealing with payments to public entities,” Pickering said. “His intentions may have been honorable but he did not follow the law.”

Donations from a public entity to private individuals are prohibited by Article 4, §66 of the Mississippi Constitution.

The findings and information of this investigation will be made available to the District Attorney’s Office and turned over to the Judicial Performance Commission to determine if or what additional actions may be warranted.

“I’ve known Judge Landrum all my life; we are both from Jones County. However, my sworn oath of office demands that I perform the duties of State Auditor which I will always strive to do,” Pickering added.



… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.

If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.

Click for more info

About MBJ Staff

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *