Richland Co. legislators want recreation commissioner suspended

Published: Jun. 21, 2016 at 3:49 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 22, 2016 at 10:56 AM EDT
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COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Richland County's legislative delegation has voted to recommend that the Richland County Recreation Commission suspend its commissioner as the FBI investigates corruption allegations against the commission.

By a 53 percent to 38 percent margin, legislative members voted in favor of a resolution asking that Commission Director James Brown III be suspended from his position.

Some members of the delegation say accusations of bribery, nepotism, and sexual harassment make it essential that Brown be removed, at least as these accusations are investigated.

"Our constituents don't understand it when we say, 'Well, let's just let the investigation play out and not make a decision until then,'" said Mia McLeod. "Because, in my opinion, that's not leadership."

Other members of the delegation say it's too early to take that type of action and lawmakers should wait until charges are officially filed.

"I believe a lot of you all stepped out and threw someone under the bus for the purpose, political purpose, just to satisfy the public," said Leon Howard during the meeting.

The vote comes as sources say the FBI, SLED, and other law enforcement agencies have gotten involved in investigating the commission.

Five lawsuits have also been filed against the commission.

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