Transylvania (N.C.) County School Board member Michael Rogers announced at Monday’s board meeting that he has no intention of stepping down after being charged with felony counts of obstructing justice and conspiracy in connection with the Howard's Rock vandalism case, BlueRidgeNow.com is reporting.
Board chair Tawny McCoy said the board has no legal authority to remove a board member accused of a crime.
Clemson University police arrested and charged Rogers, 46, of Pisgah Forest, N.C. and Alden J. Gainey, 17, of Brevard, N.C. last week.
Rogers later issued a statement saying he had done nothing more than attempt to seek the truth about the vandalism and his son, 18-year-old Micah Rogers, who was arrested on June 28 and charged with malicious injury to personal property valued at more than $2,000 but less than $10,000; trespassing; and unlawful entry into enclosed spaces.
“My determination to find the truth has resulted in me being charged with a crime that I absolutely did not commit,” Michael Rogers wrote. “Unfortunately my role in trying to find the truth has led to these allegations.”
According to BlueRidgeNow.com, the warrant charging Michael Rogers, a pastor at Dunn’s Creek Baptist Church, with obstructing justice said that on or about June 24 he met with “individuals allegedly involved in the malicious damage to Howard’s Rock” and advised them “to be untruthful about their actions when questioned by law enforcement. This intentional act did obstruct, impede and hinder the administration of justice...Witness statements disputing the defendant’s official statement were provided to law enforcement."
Another warrant charges Michael Rogers with criminal conspiracy, saying he conspired with the vandalism suspects “to accomplish an unlawful objective. The defendant planned with Alden J. Gainey and others to provide false information when questioned by law enforcement in furtherance of the conspiracy.”
Warrants filed Gainey also charge him with one count each of obstructing justice and criminal conspiracy, saying that he provided “false statements to law enforcement when questioned about his involvement."