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Chambers County woman facing charges of attempted extortion

CHAMBERS COUNTY — After being incarcerated in the Chambers County Jail since her July 6 arrest, Dorothy Sledge, 62, of Valley was indicted on six counts of first degree attempted extortion on Aug. 31.

According to an official statement by Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall, evidence was presented to a Chambers County grand jury, which led to Sledge’s six charges of attempted extortion. The charges cam as a result of Sledge sending six separate letters threatening former District Judge Joel Holley.

An investigation leading to Sledge’s arrest was ongoing from mid-May when the victim reported to police that they had received a letter from Sledge demanding money in exchange for information being withheld from law enforcement concerning Holley’s alleged involvement in a homicide.

According to the Valley Police Department, four more letters were sent throughout June and early July, each naming a “drop” location in which Sledge demanded money be left. The location was surveilled by Valley police, who recorded Sledge retrieving the money on three separate occasions.

“Sledge was previously arrested July 6, 2018, on warrants for these indicted charges that she obtained while released on bond for a previous charge of arson in the second degree,” the Attorney General’s office stated. “In that case, Dorothy Sledge is accused of intentionally setting fire to her home in an effort to unlawfully obtain insurance proceeds.”

The arson charges were indicted in February of this year. The arson case came after her husband, former Chambers County Assistant District Attorney Roland Sledge, 65, was indicted for two counts of first degree theft of property for allegedly stealing funds from a minor of whom he had been appointed as conservator.

The Sledge’s pending cases are set for a status hearing before Circuit Judge Tom Young on Sept. 13, according to the Attorney General.

“If convicted, Dorothy Sledge faces a maximum penalty of one to 10 years for each of the six counts of attempted extortion in the first degree, a class C felony, as well as two to 20 years for the charge of arson in the second-degree, a class B felony,” the Attorney General’s office stated. “Roland Sledge faces a potential penalty of two to 20 years for each of his charges of theft of property in the first degree, which is a class B felony.”