As heard on the radio0:56State attorneys got their chance Monday to question suspended DeKalb County CEO Burrell Ellis in his corruption retrial, with prosecutors trying routinely to catch Ellis in a lie.But the suspended CEO remained composed and confident as he justified his actions to the jury and rebuffed District Attorney Robert James’ tough, rapid questioning. Ellis maintained his honesty throughout, only going so far to say he once may have “misspoken.”Ellis faces nine felony counts of bribery, extortion and perjury for allegedly trying to pressure county vendors for donations to his 2012 re-election campaign, then lying about it to a grand jury investigating corruption in DeKalb.Ellis has pleaded not guilty. He maintains any issue he had with vendors was about responsiveness to his phone calls – regardless of the reason he was making them – and respect for him as CEO.During Ellis’ cross-examination, which began late in the afternoon, James tried to hammer Ellis on what obligation – if any – vendors had to return the CEO’s calls asking for political money. “They don’t have to respond [to campaign calls], correct?” the district attorney asked.“No, they don’t have to respond,” Ellis said.James pressed that point, pointing to secret recordings of Ellis captured by the state via a wire worn by the CEO’s then head of the county purchasing and contracts department, Kelvin Walton. The tapes are crucial to the state’s case against Ellis.James said the CEO is heard telling Walton he didn’t want to work with a vendor, Power & Energy, because the CEO wasn’t “responsive” to his the campaign calls, calls Ellis admitted didn’t have to be returned.“So you’re telling your procurement director that you don’t want to use this company because they’re not returning your campaign calls, is that correct or is that not correct?” James said.“No, that’s not correct,” Ellis said. “I’m telling him I don’t want to use them because they’re not responsive,”Ellis insisted the vendors didn’t know why he was calling them in the first place.The state will continue questioning Ellis Tuesday.The two-term CEO’s first corruption trial ended in a mistrial, after the jury failed to reach a verdict on any of the charges brought against him.Judge Courtney Johnson has said this jury could begin deliberations Tuesday or Wednesday. Share Legal Advocate Discusses Medical Abuse At Shut Down Georgia ICE Facility Related Stories For Whom The Bell Rings 0:56 | Play story Add to My ListIn My List ‘It’s Fractured’: Georgia Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan On Healing Republican Party
Star Files View Comments Three-time Tony Award nominee Rebecca Luker will join the cast of Cinderella on September 6 as the Fairy Godmother Marie, remaining with the Broadway production through January 19, 2014. Original star Victoria Clark will depart the production for an unnamed “new project,” returning on January 21. Show Closed This production ended its run on Jan. 4, 2015 Cinderella Cinderella continues its run at the Broadway Theatre, where the show began previews on January 25 and opened on March 3. As Marie, Luker will sing “Impossible/It’s Possible” with Laura Osnes in the title role, as well as “There’s Music in You,” which was added for the Broadway production. Rebecca Luker Related Shows Luker received Tony nominations for her performances in Mary Poppins, The Music Man and Show Boat. She starred in the 1998 Broadway revival of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s The Sound of Music and has appeared on Broadway in Nine, The Secret Garden and The Phantom of the Opera. Off-Broadway credits include the world premiere of Maury Yeston’s Death Takes a Holiday, Indian Blood, The Vagina Monologues, Can’t Let Go and Encores! productions of Where’s Charley and The Boys from Syracuse.