[UPDATE] Former Employee Files Suit Against Gadsden County Board of Commissioners

By: Candace Sweat Email
By: Candace Sweat Email

UPDATED by Candace Sweat 11/2 at 11:30pm

The Gadsden County Board of Commissioners has decided to settle the matter outside of court.

Presnell's attorney David Franks says the the Board met at 9 Tuesday morning and voted 4 to 0 to approve a settlement with Presnell.

Franks says Presnell will be given another job with the county and his letter of termination will be retracted from his records.

Presnell claims he was wrongfully terminated from his position as County Public Works Director after filing a written complaint, stating that commissioners devised a scheme in 2008 to manipulate the county elections.

Franks says he is pleased with the settlement and released a statement saying "I consider the result a victory for Mr. Presnell and I am thankful for the huge ammount of support from the citizens of Gadsden County."
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UPDATED by Candace Sweat 10/28 at 6:15pm

A former Gadsden County Employee files a suit against the Board of Commissioners accusing them of election fraud and wrongful termination.

Now the Board is considering a settlement that would keep them from facing off in court.

The Gadsden County Board of Directors will meet next Tuesday 11/2 to vote on whether to approve a settlement with Robert Presnell.

Presnell claims he was wrongfully terminated from his position as County Public Works Director after filing a written complaint, stating that commissioners devised a scheme in 2008 to manipulate the county elections.

If Board members decide to settle, Presnell's attorney says he will get a job back and his termination letter will be retracted.
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UPDATED by Candace Sweat 10/18 at 10:30pm

Robert Presnell said very little while sitting in court on Monday night. But he claims the reason he's there in the first place is because he apparently he said too much.

"Whether you have local issue or a state issue the bottom line is to tell somebody who can do something about it to remedy it," said Bryan Gowdy, one of Presnell's lawyers.

Presnell filed a law suit against the Gadsden County Board of Commissioners on September 15th claiming he was wrongfully terminated from his position as County Public Works director.

The suit claims Presnell was fired after filing a written complaint to the Sheriff's Office stating that commissioners Doug Croley, Gene Morgan and Eugene Lamb devised a scheme in 2008 to manipulate the county elections.

Presnell says the commissioners recruited and financed a candidate's campaign in an effort to split the African American vote.

The board filed a motion to have the lawsuit thrown out, claiming Presnell did not report the incident to an appropriate local official, and that the incident reported didn't qualify for whistle blower protection.

"He does not say that he reported this to the county. He does not say that he asked the Sheriff's Office to report this to the county," said Brian Duffy, Gadsden County Commissioner's Attorney.

Judge John Cooper disagreed with the county's motion and ultimately denied their request to dismiss the case.

Presnell says he reported the allegations to expose the corruption...and now he wants his job back.

Both sides will meet again on November 9th for a hearing where Presnell plans to try to get his job back. We'll keep you posted on any new developments.
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UPDATED by Candace Sweat 10/13 at 5:00pm

A hearing has been scheduled in the case of a former Gadsden County employee who filed a law suit against the County Board of Commissioners.

Attorney David Frank filed a law suit nearly 4 weeks ago against the Board of Commissioners on behalf of his client Robert Presnell.

Presnell claims he was wrongfully terminated from his position as County Public Works Director after filing a written complaint, stating that commissioners devised a scheme in 2008 to manipulate the county elections.

The board has filed a motion to dismiss the case. Both parties will be present at a hearing on Monday in Quincy.
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The plaintiff behind the suit is Gadsden County's former Public Works Director, Robert Presnell, who says he was wrongfully terminated after claiming several commissioners participated in a voting scandal.

ON Wednesday Attorney David Frank marched up the stairs of the Gadsden County Courthouse this morning to file a law suit against the Gadsden County Board of Commissioners on behalf of his client Robert Presnell.

"Hi I'm going to be filing a complaint circuit civil," said Frank to the clerk.
"We hope the County reconsiders and understands that what they did was a violation of Florida law and that they reinstate Mr Presnell."

Presnell claims he was wrongfully terminated from his position as County Public Works Director after filing a written complaint stating that commissioners devised a scheme in 2008 to manipulate the county elections.

Presnell says Commissioners Doug Croley, Gene Morgan and Eugene Lamb recruited and financed a candidate's campaign in an effort to split the African American vote.

Morgan, a white man, was running against Derrick Price for the commission seat when Randolph Bush, a black man, entered the race.

"Financed is perhaps a polite word to use the report is not that campaign materials were paid for and that kind of thing. The report is that cash in amounts to exceed 500 dollars were hand delivered to the candidate himself," said Frank.

We were there as the law suit was delivered to Commission Chairman Eugene Lamb.

Presnell says he reported the allegations to expose the corruption and now he wants his job back.

Commissioner Lamb says the allegations in the law suit are absolutely untrue.

He says he is completely unaware of any wrong doings during the 2008 elections.

As for Mr. Presnell's termination, Lamb says it was the county manager responsible for that decision, not the commissioners.

WCTV has included Mr. Presnell's letter of termination, as well as the Presnell complaint.


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