Former Union General Hospital Officials Back in the News


Blairsville, GA – John Michael Gowder, more commonly known as Mike Gowder, former Chief Executive Officer of Union General Hospital, Inc., which controlled the Union County entity known as Union General Hospital Authority, was indicted in both Union and Towns Counties on multiple counts of Fraud in Obtaining Controlled Substances (O.C.G.A. 16-13-43(a)(3)) and Violation of Georgia Controlled Substances Act (O.C.G.A. 16-13-30(a)). Gowder was indicted in Towns County in July 5, 2017 on 32 counts and in Union County on July 7, 2017 on 4 counts. Gowder’s associate, former Board Member of Union General Hospital, Inc., Dr. James Lanier Heaton, was indicted in Union County on July 7, 2017 on 44 counts in connection with this case. Due to the large amount of indictments being processed in the Union County Clerk of Superior Court Office, Fetch Your News was not able to obtain hard copies of the Union County indictments on Gowder and Heaton; therefore, we are not yet privy to the substance of the violations they were indicted for in Union County. However, we will update this story with the particulars of the indictments as soon as they are available.

Dr. James Lanier Heaton, age 60.

Dr. George David Gowder III, age 59

Gowder’s brother, George David Gowder III, and his niece, Jamie Lee Harkins, were both indicted April 20, 2017 on 66 counts in connection with this Union General Hospital scandal (see May 1, 2017 FYN article).

Jamie Lee Harkins, age 36

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