CCSD contract lawyer has possible conflict of interest

CCSD contract lawyer has possible conflict of interest
October 20 13:42 2018 Print This Article

Charleston County School District (CCSD) hired attorney Wilbur Johnson with the Clement Young Rivers law firm in September to investigate the 2014 child pornography and potential child molestation cases involving a CCSD employee. Johnson is a supporter of the non-profit group Coalition For Kids, which has endorsed three incumbent school board members on the November 6 ballot. That may represent a conflict of interest.

Clement Young Rivers, and Johnson specifically, do a lot of contract legal work for CCSD. Coalition For Kids, which has other supporters with financial ties to CCSD, endorsed school board candidates Kate Darby (chairwoman), Cindy Bohn Coats (former chairwoman) and Eric Mack (vice-chairman). Coats could potentially have a role in the 2014 personnel investigation, as she served as chairwoman at the time of the incident. School board member Kevin Hollinshead expressed reservations about the Johnson hire in September, citing the financial ties the attorney has to CCSD.

Charleston County School Board meets Monday at 5 pm at 75 Calhoun Street and may discuss terminating the legal contract. State Representative Peter McCoy (R-James Island), who chairs the Charleston County Legislative Delegation, said in September that he would appoint a committee to investigate the 2014 incident, but no committee has been named to date.

Lowcountry Source has learned that the State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) has referred the 2014 incident to the Attorney General’s office as a criminal investigation, at the request of the Tri-county National Action Network.