04 December 2011

2005 political lawsuit: darrell williamson et al vs alexandria city council et al

the winds and rains of hurricane rita were still lashing central louisiana when kalb tv-5 led their noon news program with the report that then alexandria, la., mayor ned randolph had fired his longtime chief of staff harold chambers, utilities director a.e."sonny" craig and director of public works and planning darrell williamson.

according to the petition they had all worked for mayor randolph since december 1986.

supposedly the three had attended a 30 november 2004, executive session of the alexandria city council in which the first allegations of cleco fraud (overbilling the city for electricity) were presented to the council.

and again, supposedly, they contacted cleco about what they had learned ("the nine page written summation of accusations") in the closed door (secret) executive session to tip cleco off to what was about to go down.

it's unclear just who presented this theory to mayor randolph and talked him into believing it and he suspended mr. williamson, mr. craig and mr. chambers on 05 august 2005 pending an investigation.

mayor randolph fired them on friday, 23 september 2005 and they sued for amongst other things, wrongful termination and defamation.

the city engaged the so called gold firm to represent them probably with a view to removing the suit to federal court which would have given the city a tremendous advantage as the federal judge came from the gold firm.

the plaintiffs attorney the late john w. "jock" scott (himself the son of the late federal judge nauman scott) must have anticipated this because you can tell he went a little overboard in ensuring that this was not a federal case.

according to the rapides parish clerk of court's website the gold firm never filed any responsive pleadings on behalf of the city.

its unknown to us because it's unavailable in the court record that's available whether or not the plaintiffs received any sort of settlement from the city;

on 01 march 2006 the plaintiffs filed a judgment of dismissal which ninth judicial district court judge harry randow signed on 03 march. the case was dismissed with prejudice and at the defendants' cost.


Williamson et al vs Alexandria City Council et al
click here to download fifty-six page .pdf [1.8 mb]