Court to hear RH case Friday

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 29, 2005

CHILLICOTHE - The Ohio Fourth District Court of Appeals will consider non-oral arguments Friday in the removal of three Rock Hill School Board members.

Lavetta Sites, Paul R. Johnson and Wanda Jenkins were removed from the board in a lawsuit last month in Lawrence County Common Pleas Court.

All three board members, through their attorney, Steve Rodeheffer, have asked the court of appeals for permission to appeal that verdict.

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&#8220Each side will submit a written memorandum to the judges and then the judges will make their decision whether to hear an appeal after that,” said appeals court administrator Aaron McHenry.

As to when the judges might decide whether to grant permission for an appeal, McHenry said they will likely make a decision &#8220fairly quickly but I don't have a time frame.”

A citizens group, Citizens Against Poor Spending (CAPS) filed the lawsuit against the three board members, charging &#8220malfeasance, misfeasance and nonfeasance of office,” charges the three board members deny.

Austin Wildman, co-counsel for CAPS, said he feels confident in presenting his argument that no appeal is necessary.

&#8220The trial court committed no error. It was a clean trial,” Wildman said. &#8220And that really is the only issue.”

Rodeheffer could not be reached for comment. The two remaining school board members selected replacements for those three board members at a special meeting last week.

Kendall Kitchen, Ora Cox and Rich Donohue will fill the vacancies left by Sites, Johnson and Jenkins.

However, Jenkins won re-election to the school board last week and will take her place again in January.