Real Estate & Property Law

Stranger's lost diamond ring leads to criminal charge for lawyer who found it

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A Georgia lawyer is facing a felony theft case after allegedly failing to return a valuable diamond ring that was lost Feb. 7 in a restaurant parking lot by a woman she apparently does not know.

Alexia Dawn Davis, 31, was charged with theft of lost or mislaid property and booked into the Colum­bia Coun­ty Deten­tion Center before being released on $2,500 bail, reports the Augusta Chronicle.

Davis, who works for the public defender’s office in Augusta, fell afoul of the law because she failed to take reasonable measures to return the ring, said Capt. Steve Morris of the Columbia County sheriff’s office. He said a woman with Davis went into the Cracker Barrel restaurant after the ring was found, asked about what should be done and declined to leave it with the restaurant, saying that the Richmond County sheriff’s office would be notified. “And it never was.”

However, attorney Tanya Jeffords, who represents Davis, said the criminal charge is not appropriate.

“No matter what shadow the sheriff and the district attorney’s office tries to cast upon Ms. Davis’ impeccable reputation and her motives, the legal fact is that she did not appropriate the ring for her own use, which is the crime this statute is intending to cover,” said Jeffords in a written statement provided to the newspaper. “When she learned who the owner was through the postings online from the Sheriff’s office, she promptly turned it in. She knew it was valuable but she had neither sold it nor wore the ring as if it was hers.”

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