Wednesday, May 15, 2019

This WILL stop!!!

When last night's school board adjourned, I made a bee-line for the speaker who had addressed the board about lack of transparency and then stepped over to thank Mrs. Agostini.

I was immediately swarmed by two deputies, and I exclaimed, "What's this?" One said, "She is trying to leave." I said she wasn't, and Mrs. Agostini told them she wasn't and that everything was okay.

This is insane. Since when can a member of the public not speak to a public official?

I recalled my conversation at the Richland County Sheriff's Department on March 20, after Teresa Holmes filed a harassment complaint against me. Sgt. Dauway said that board members could not be approached after meetings. He also said the meeting was over and there was nothing more to be said. And he said "they don't want anything to happen".

The only thing that is happening is that the sheriff's deputy is infringing on peaceable right to gather and free speech.

I didn't challenge Dauway when I met with him and the Deputy Chief of the Criminal Investigations Division of the Sheriff's Department. After I read Holmes' report, I pointed out all the false statements in it. (Frankly, they should have charged her with filing a false police report.) On April 26 I requested and received a copy of the supplemental report to Holmes' complaint, which stated, in part, "An investigation into this case revealed that a crime did not occur."

I don't know yet who gave instructions to the Sheriff's Department about what was expected of their deputies. But the Board does not need any protection from the public. To my knowledge, there has never been a threat against a board member.

The law-enforcement presence began after the January 22 board meeting. It's way past time for it to end. The board can order the Superintendent to cancel the agreement with the sheriff's department. The three deputies who have been attending every board meeting after January 22 can find over-time somewhere else in the District, not at Richland 2 School District expense!

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