TAKE A STAND: Kevin Hollinshead

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The recent arrest of Kevin Hollinshead is raising serious questions about his standing as a board member with the Charleston County School District.

He turned himself into police after an arrest warrant was issued for two bad checks totaling $330 written last year.

Yes, we all make mistakes, and some may say writing bad checks is a misdemeanor, so what's the big deal? Here's why this is a big deal.

First of all, a misdemeanor is still a crime.

Second, when a person runs for public office and becomes an elected official, they should be held to a much higher standard and accountability.  And if you are elected to help manage and oversee a half billion-dollar budget funded by taxpayer dollars, as well as being entrusted to make decisions about the education of 50,000 of our school children and more than 6,000 employees, well, the level of accountability is even higher.

And Hollinshead can't hide behind the excuse that he didn't know about the bad checks and turned himself into police as soon as he learned about the warrant. Come on.

Section 34-1­1-70 of South Carolina's criminal code is simple and clear. Before a bad check case ever rises to the level of an arrest warrant, there have been numerous attempts to resolve the case, including certified letters giving the person 10 days to pay the full amount plus a service charge.

An arrest warrant is issued only when the person who wrote the bad check ignores every possible resolution. And this comes at a time when Hollinshsead voted himself a $14,000 pay raise, and voted for the raise again, when the financially-strapped board voted to rescind the pay raise.

But, let's be fair. Everyone is innocent until proven guilty.  If this is all a big misunderstanding and Kevin Hollinshead is not guilty of writing bad checks, he is owed an apology, and I'll be first in line.

But, if he is found guilty, or if he cuts a deal to make this go away, Kevin Hollinshead should resign as a board member with the Charleston County School District.

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