LAWRENCEVILLE - Two of the most notorious inmates at the Gwinnett County Detention Center have been placed together in the same cell - all because one of the men's parents complained to the sheriff about their son's dental problems.
According to his parents, 22-year-old Daniel "Andrew" Wolcott, has not received sufficient dental care while in jail on charges related to the theft of a $7 million charter jet, which he allegedly stole to take his friends for a brief joy ride.
Scott and Diane Wolcott said the only service provided by the dentist at the jail is tooth extraction. They complain their son has also been deprived of dental floss.
Andrew Wolcott's inability to floss since his Oct. 12 arrest prompted his parents to pay for his wisdom teeth to be extracted last week by a private dentist to avoid tooth decay. The dentist also said Wolcott is suffering from bleeding gums and early signs of gum disease, his parents said.
Gwinnett County Sheriff Butch Conway said the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that jails do not have to provide dental floss because it can be a security risk. Yet spurred by the complaints from Wolcott's parents, Conway came up with a creative solution.
He placed Wolcott in a cell with Dacula dentist Dr. Barton Corbin, who faces murder charges in the deaths of his wife and a former girlfriend. Police investigators said both of the women died of a single gunshot wound to the head and that their deaths were staged to look like suicides.
A spokesperson for Conway said he considers the controversy about Wolcott's dental care to be over, and said he will make no further comments about the issue.
All of the grievances filed by the Wolcotts have turned out to be invalid and "extremely ridiculous complaints that took an inordinate amount of resources to deal with," Conway said in a prepared statement issued Monday.
"Daniel Andrew Wolcott - who I might add is an adult and can speak for himself - was placed in a cell with someone experienced in dentistry to make absolutely certain that if he had a complaint from his last dental appointment that we would be notified," the statement read.
"While obviously Mr. Bart Corbin will not be treating Mr. Wolcott, Mr. Corbin would know if we needed to be notified of any type of dental emergency."
Wolcott's parents are upset because their son was moved from an area of the jail where nonviolent offenders are housed into "K Pod," which houses violent offenders, in what they see as a retaliatory strike. And they are not amused at the sheriff's choice of a bunkmate for their son.
"Why didn't (Conway) move him to the jail's medical unit if he was concerned about his general health with dentistry?" said Scott Wolcott. "I consider what Sheriff Conway has done very infantile."
An attorney for Corbin could not be reached for comment Monday afternoon. However, Scott Wolcott said Corbin did not appreciate the stunt.
"He was totally unaware of this whole situation until this morning," said Scott Wolcott, who apparently talked with his son about Corbin's sentiments. "He feels they are trying to make a mockery out of him and add prejudice onto his case."