A former assistant to Prichard Mayor Jimmie Gardner has been hit with additional criminal charges in an ongoing investigation into “financial irregularities” during his employment.

The Mobile County District Attorney’s office confirmed Thursday that James Antuan Blackman had turned himself into authorities to face four additional charges of using an official position for personal gain.

James Blackman, former assistant to Prichard Mayor Jimmie Gardner, has been charged with more than 20 counts of theft and using his former position for personal gain. (MCSO)

Blackman was initially arrested Feb. 1 on 17 counts of first-degree theft, just weeks after Gardner called a press conference to publicly announce Blackman’s termination.
At the time, the district attorney’s office said those 17 counts represented multiple instances of theft that, taken together, add up to well over $100,000.

According to local prosecutors, the new charges are related to property Blackman directed the
city to purchase which he then put in his own name or his wife’s name.

He’s also been accused of selling items as a city representative but retain the proceeds himself.

All four of the newest charges against Blackman are Class B felonies. So far, the city of Prichard has not responded to the latest developments, though Gardner has been relatively vocal since he fired his former assistant last month.

In a statement following Blackman’s initial arrest, Gardner called it a “horrific event, ” noting the city reported the criminal activity immediately after it was discovered.