The book, “The Echols Files: Catoosa County Justice,” is private investigator Eric D. Echols’ first-person account of what he experienced after being hired by Tonya Craft and her defense team leading up to the 2010 child molestation trial that captivated Ringgold, north Georgia, and subsequently the country.
Craft, a former kindergarten teacher at Chickamauga Elementary School, was charged with molesting three young girls, one of which was her daughter. She was acquitted on May 11, 2010, in Catoosa County Superior Court, on all 22 counts of child molestation, aggravated child molestation, and aggravated sexual battery.
During his investigation, Echols was arrested after a father of one of the girls told the Catoosa County Sheriff’s Office that Echols had used intimidation tactics to persuade him against testifying in the case.
Echols was charged with three counts of tampering with a witness.
Those charges were dropped in February 2011.
According to Echols, the book depicts his journey through the case while experiencing racial tensions, a physical attack, as well as lies, deceit, and his arrest.
“This book will take you through the investigation, the evidence I found, and why I was falsely arrested and charged with three felony counts of witness influencing by the district attorney in Catoosa County,” Echols said in a news release. “The purpose of this book is to bring to light my factual account of the investigation.”
The book can be purchased online at createspace.com/3855792, or by contacting Echols directly at email@example.com.
Q&A with Eric D. Echols
What inspired you to write the book?
“I was inspired to write the book to tell my story as a private investigator that was hired to perform services on one of the biggest child molestation cases in north Georgia.”
What do you want from writing this book?
“I want to set up an investigation fund that will be used to provide adequate and professional investigative services for people with legitimate cases. There are so many people that are falsely arrested, have to take a plea deal, or have lost a loved one that cannot afford sufficient and proficient investigations. I want to be able to give back and help those in need.”
Why should people read your book?
“This book is much more than a true story from the private investigator on a high-profile child molestation case. It’s about helping someone in need, crossing barriers, and most of all, humanity. People should get this book, because this can happen to anyone and laws need to be revisited or updated, especially when those who work in the judicial system are the ones abusing and violating the law.”
“The Echols Files: Catoosa County Justice”
Author: Private investigator Eric D. Echols, CFI
Published: June 4, 2012