Nellums responds, sort of, to Jegley report | Arkansas Blog

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Nellums responds, sort of, to Jegley report

Posted By on Sat, May 21, 2011 at 6:45 AM

WITH FRIENDS LIKE THESE: Michael Nellums
  • WITH FRIENDS LIKE THESE: Michael Nellums
I got an e-mail late last night from Michael Nellums, the Mills High principal and Little Rock School Board member, named yesterday by Prosecutor Larry Jegley as a key player in a videotaped effort to make it appear Pulaski County School Board member Gwen Williams had taken a bribe. It was a "juvenile" stunt and a "ruse," Jegley said. No crimes were committed, but Jegley's report excoriated those involved and lamented the time wasted on investigation of it.

The response from Nellums:

Max, it's always good to hear from you before an opinion has been established. For your information, I have always supported Mrs. Williams, which she and many school personnel can attest to. Based upon that continued support over the last twelve or thirteen years, including contributing to her runs for re-election to the board, I think my support for her speaks for itself. Chip Welch is my lawyer though, you can always call him.

P.S. I'm still looking for that positive story you promised me a few years ago.

With friends like these ....

I turned to Welch. Beyond noting that the prosecutor found no "criminal intent" on Nellums' part, he said he would have no comment, including on a question of potential civil liability.

Pulaski School Board member Tim Clark, identified by Jegley as Nellums' ally, promised to get back to me after reading the report, which I provided him. He never did.

Reticence is understandable on sheer embarrassment alone. There's also a chance Gwen Williams could seek redress in civil court for being depicted as a crook in a video orchestrated by two local school board members, one of them leader of a public high school. It is a sad day.

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