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Carpenter to withdraw lawsuit against BOE member

COVINGTON -- In a letter emailed to the Citizen Tuesday evening, Alcovy High School Principal LaQuanda Carpenter stated that she had decided to withdraw the pending lawsuit against Newton County Board of Education Vice Chairman Jeff Meadors in an effort to end divisiveness in the community.

The letter was forwarded by Carpenter's attorney Stephanie Lindsey, who said in her email that Carpenter would not be available for further comment on the matter.

"Recently, it has been surmised that the lawsuit (to which I am a party), the online commenting, and Board of Education mistrust are issues that are preventing us as a community from moving forward and reaching our greatest potential," Carpenter wrote in her letter. "While I have no influence over board actions or the online commenting, I do have a position relative to the pending lawsuit, Carpenter v. Meadors, and its impact on our community's continued progress. This lawsuit was filed to defend against the barrage of falsehoods and malicious attacks on my integrity, professionalism and teaching credentials. This lawsuit was filed to defend my students, teachers and administrators who have persevered through the positive transformation that AHS has begun to undergo during my tenure. This lawsuit was never meant to promote the divisive, hateful or win-at-any-cost behavior that has ensued since its inception."

Carpenter stated that she made the decision to drop the lawsuit after prayer, thought and deliberation.

"This decision was not an easy one," she wrote. "To me, this lawsuit has always been about accountability, transparency and truthfulness. To that end, I would like the community at large to know that I would welcome any level of investigation into any of my actions during the course of employment with the Newton County School System. I would welcome such investigations from any entity, regardless of whether such investigation is related to my conduct from a policy, legal, moral or ethical standpoint."

Carpenter also wrote that she wanted to thank all of those who supported and prayed for Alcovy and her family.

"I would greatly appreciate your continued prayers that this measure will be the initial step for everyone involved to begin working together for increased student achievement and community prosperity," she wrote. "I cannot dictate the virtues of others, but I will continue to live my life as one that I can be proud of as wife, mother, daughter, sister, educator, friend and citizen of Newton County."

Carpenter originally filed a lawsuit in April naming 11 "John Does" who commented about Carpenter on the Newton Citizen website. The lawsuit claimed that Carpenter had "experienced enormous suffering and damage to her reputation in the community and to her trade or profession" as a result of the website postings.

Carpenter was seeking court costs and monetary damages to be determined by a jury.

Three of the defendants were dismissed from the suit in late April, and in June the complaint was amended to add Meadors to the list of defendants. In the amended complaint, Carpenter claimed that Meadors was slanderous and malicious in making false statements about her profession to expose her to public hatred, contempt or ridicule.

She alleged that Meadors made comments on the Newton Citizen website under pseudonyms or gave information obtained through his capacity as a board member to others who made the comments.

Meadors has denied that he made any defamatory statements about the plaintiff.

Also in June Judge Eugene Benton granted the Newton Citizen's motion to quash a subpoena seeking information from the newspaper that would identify the anonymous posters named in the lawsuit.

The subpoena requested from the Citizen all information and documents sufficient to identify the names, addresses and telephone numbers associated with those named in the lawsuit, as well as documents reproducing the texts of the comments from Jan. 1, 2011, to present and all server logs, IP address logs, account information, account access records and application or registration forms related to those named.

In August, all of the remaining eight "John Does" were dropped from the lawsuit, leaving Meadors as the only defendant.

Last week Meadors' attorney Jeff Foster filed a third party request in Newton County Superior Court for numerous documents from the Newton County Board of Education, school board attorney Kent Campbell and Newton County School System Superintendent Gary Mathews.

Comments

OnToday 2 years, 2 months ago

Not good enough. She and her attorney owe several people an apology. This silly lawsuit has impacted many people, including Meadors, current and former teachers, and parents. Remember the teacher who posted something and was suspended? Or the former teacher who was named in the suit? Or the parents who complained about her? You can't just drag this out over 5 months and then say it's over. Meadors and the others deserve better and they deserve to be exonerated.

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TheUpside 2 years, 2 months ago

Mr. Meadors please do not allow her to get away with this. This frivolous suit has damaged many and she cannot be let off scot free. I have not heard of one thing done wrong by you but she sure seemed scared of your attorneys request. Shame on her and shame on this attorney and shame on the Covington News. They owe you damages.

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Lucy30016 2 years, 2 months ago

DRAG HER THROUGH EVERY COURTROOM for filing this.

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Billy 2 years, 2 months ago

"In order to avoid divisiveness in the community"? The true reason is that she didn't have a case to begin with...

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Lucy30016 2 years, 2 months ago

Mr. Foster go for the jugular!

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FishyFishy 2 years, 2 months ago

It's plain to see that the two articles in the other paper that wouldn't allow the comments was "their last word". Wow. Just, wow.

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LOVINGLIFE 2 years, 2 months ago

This woman needs to realize that she has destroyed her credibility by playing around with this lawsuit. Now maybe she will withdraw her position too. She needs to payback the taxpayers for the money that has been wasted on this circus also. There is no way that she should be off the hook for this waste , and the problems she has caused within the school system.

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CBSfinder 2 years, 2 months ago

I don't see her getting off that easy not if some have anything to do with it. I also into see meadors or his Atty letting it be. She needs to realize what she has caused not just because she says it's over it is supposed to be. I find this in poor taste.

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RV30015 2 years, 2 months ago

I need details on the transformation LaQuanda talks about the school is low on most every performace score. Is this a stab at Easterday like the one at Hallman the one at Dockery the one at Meadors . . . .her action here is unforgivable and I pray she is sued for all damages this was a hateful campaign in a low performing school.

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Tairuna 2 years, 2 months ago

I don't see this going away as quickly as she thinks it will. Just because you dismiss a case doesn't mean will forgive and forget. Some were put through the ringer and judements were made on some and it was really unfair. At least things blogged were true even if you didn't like it LC it shouldn't of questioned anything. Sometimes we just have to accept what we have done wrong. Take Shannon Black she was the first to come forward and say hey I did this no one else Im these people and what happened? She got nothing but grief for it. Also during the deposition or after rather they played dirty and well. Some could take lessons. We all make mistakes we all do things we shouldn't now accept the wrong doing and just go with what ever happens.

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Satan69 2 years, 2 months ago

I find it very amazing that she all of a sudden out of the blue drops the suit for no reason. Oh yes I do their hiding everything. Some are not as forgiving as others. But I don't see any of these people or teachers being forgiving.

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JoanD 2 years, 2 months ago

Oh I hope to see Foster go for blood. I think meadors more than deserves. It.

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tomgahunter 2 years, 2 months ago

After Sunday's Hatchet Jon the the Covington Non News, I hope Mr Meadorsgoes after them also.. Bet Out of the park Johnson doesn't apoligise.

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ShannonBlack 2 years, 2 months ago

I don't see any of them apologizing really. I think he will. Let them all have it. I hope so anyway. Sad sad. He deserves an apology if nothing else.

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Shart15 2 years ago

If this letter was sent out on school system email and the IFBG system policy was violated then I am very concerned.

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