Prosecution of former school board member for derogatory ads to move forward
CHARLESTON, SC (WCBD) – A lawsuit filed by former Charleston County School Board member Kevin Hollinshead against two organizations for what he called derogatory campaign ads is progressing after an earlier court ruling dismissed the lawsuit.
Hollinshead filed a lawsuit in February 2021 against Thomas Josh Bell, the Charleston Coalition for Kids, and Teach for America in response to “character-disparaging radio and television ads” during a 2020 re-election bid.
The announcement was linked to a lawsuit dating back more than 16 years when Hollinshead was an insurance salesman selling insurance policies to students at Benedict College.
The advertisements carried accusations such as “Kevin Hollinshead doesn’t know what to do with your money” and “Hollinshead was successfully prosecuted for stealing nearly $150,000,000 from Benedict College students”.
But Hollinshead’s attorney, Edward Pritchard III, said the adverts were a “complete fabrication of the truth” and said the college was not directly involved, and although Hollinshead was sued for that sum of money, he settled this issue.
After losing his 2020 re-election bid, Hollinshead filed a lawsuit claiming the negative ads cost him the school board seat.
The lawsuit was previously dismissed, but Hollinshead and his attorney appealed; the Coalition for Kids filed a motion to dismiss the appeal, but an appeals court judge denied the motion.
The case will move forward. A date has not been set.
Hollinshead has announced a new bid to serve on the Charleston County School Board to represent the North Area District, or District 4 Headquarters.