The city released exhibits Monday used in an investigation report of alleged harassment between a Goldsboro city councilman and a city employee.
The exhibits and investigation report led to a censure hearing that is scheduled Monday for Councilman Antonio Williams to determine if he harassed Shycole Simpson-Carter, Goldsboro community relations director.
The records are available to the public through the city clerk, Melissa Capps, or deputy city clerk Laura Getz. Copies can be reviewed after a public information request is made by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. or Igetz@goldsboronc.gov.
The exhibits include Goldsboro City Council minutes from February 2017 through the following year, Goldsboro-Wayne Transportation Authority board memorandums and meeting minutes and records involving the city’s summer youth employment program.
The records highlight interactions between Williams and Simpson-Carter and a paper trail of discussions about city business.
Included in the nearly 650 pages of documents, court records and meeting minutes, within 22 exhibits released by the city, is an Oct. 5 hand-written complaint from Williams to former interim city manager Randy Guthrie about Simpson-Carter.
In the letter, as part of Exhibit B, Williams calls for Simpson-Carter’s firing. The documents also include statements from Simpson-Carter to Guthrie complaining about Williams.
Simpson-Carter and Williams began clashing in early 2017 after Yvonnia Moore, who co-owns the Ice Storm in downtown Goldsboro with Williams, was denied to receive 12 workers as part of the city’s summer youth employment program.
The exhibits also include minutes from the Sept. 27 GWTA board meeting when Simpson-Carter and Williams went into closed session.
According to Freeman Hardison Jr., GWTA board chairman, Williams verbally attacked Simpson-Carter while she was presenting facts about how GWTA was involved in transporting homeless people after Hurricane Florence.
“His temper tantrum included name calling and claims that Ms. Simpson-Carter was ‘out to get him’,” according to the chairman’s written statement. “I found his attack not only offensive to Ms. Simpson-Carter but also disrespectful to the other board members who were present. As the city council representative on the board, he did the council a disservice.”
There is an Oct. 2 memorandum from Simpson-Carter to Guthrie, Mayor Chuck Allen and Hardison, whose names are redacted in the records, about the closed session. Simpson-Carter described Williams’ behavior as “aggressive and unhinged.”
After the meeting, Hardison presented a letter to Guthrie requesting that Williams be replaced on the GWTA board.
Williams was removed from the GWTA board on Oct. 15 after a 4-2 vote from City Council. Williams and Councilman Bevan Foster voted against the removal.
The city hired an attorney last year to investigate allegations that Williams harassed Simpson-Carter, which he has consistently denied.
Simpson-Carter filed a no-contact order against Williams, but a judge denied the request in November.
Melissa Capps, Goldsboro city clerk, said the exhibits were released, like the redacted investigation report released to the public in June, because Simpson-Carter signed a release statement that allowed it as long as the report was redacted.
Capps said it took longer to release the 22 exhibits because there was so much information and it also had to be redacted to protect city personnel.
The city released the records to the News-Argus Monday with a 10-day window to review the documents.
Williams’s hearing is at 10 a.m. Monday, tentatively at council chambers in City Hall but the city has not yet confirmed the location.
If council determines Williams harassed Simpson-Carter, it could prohibit his access to her office or certain city buildings.
City Council can also ask the city attorney to seek local legislation to authorize a recall election or even remove Williams from office by a motion proceeding, according to a city report.