Clarence Sutton00000000

The Tuscaloosa chapter of the NAACP officially asked that Tuscaloosa City Schools Board Member Clarence Sutton St. step down from his post on Tuesday.

The regularly scheduled meeting was packed, the room split between those who want Stutton to step down or stay. Sutton was appointed to lead Distrct 1 on the school board back in August after the death of board member James Minyard.

Nine months later, the NAACP is requesting he resign after learning of sexual harassment allegations against him that happened back in 1996. Sutton was never found guilty of any crime, but there was a $90,000 settlement.

During Tuesday’s meeting, Tuscaloosa NAACP chapter President Jerry Carter told board members he received a phone call from the alleged victim, who asked him to set up a news conference between she and Sutton.

“She said she wanted Rev. Sutton to face his accuser,” Carter said. “And she said she wanted to give him that opportunity. She wanted to remove me from it and give him an opportunity to just deal with her.”


Carter said the meeting could be very effective.

“There two, if not three sides to every story,” he said. “We’ve only heard one side. Rev. Sutton has defended himself with her accusations, but we’ve not heard from the person who is actually the alleged victim.”

In an on-camera interview with Sutton last week, Sutton said he believes the attacks from the NAACP are personal.

“I don’t understand what their motive is for bringing this up at this time,” he said. “Unless they’re just super angry with me because I chose to go in a different direction with the new school.”

Some of Sutton’s youngest supporters agree.

“(Sutton) is a good man,” said Central High School senior Shaneka Prude. “He has done a lot for us as students, and for the NAACP to come with old allegations, it’s really disappointing.”

Carter said this issue has nothing to do with the demographic plan.

The proposed news conference will be Thursday at noon at Central Office.


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