Moms facing eviction request trial by jury
Two single mothers facing eviction from Charleston's Gadsden Green public housing because their children were charged with armed robbery have asked for a jury trial.
The women want their peers to decide whether they willingly violated the terms of their leases with the Charleston Housing Authority, their attorney John F. "Skip" Martin said Thursday.
The leases allow for families to be evicted if any member is involved in detrimental behavior, on or off public housing grounds. Jacqueline Clinton and Elizabeth Speed said they never did permit, or would condone, the crimes their children are charged with.
In October, six juveniles, ages 14 to 16, who are the children of five Gadsden Green women, were arrested for allegedly confronting two people in separate incidents near the College of Charleston.
Two of the women have since left Gadsden Green for reasons other than the criminal charges. The other woman, Rushia Robertson, is being allowed to stay based on her previous good conduct with the authority and that of her child, said Housing Authority Chief Operating Officer James Heyward Jr.
No date for a trial or hearing has been set. Until a court timetable is set, there is no immediate threat that the women will be removed, Martin said.
In a related matter, Jesse Jackson's Rainbow/PUSH Coalition is planning to file a friend of the court legal brief in support of the women, Martin added.
The Housing Authority has no position on going forward with a jury trial, Heyward said.