Principal wrote letter supporting sex offender's pardon on schoo - WFXG FOX 54 - News Now

Principal wrote letter supporting sex offender's pardon on school letterhead

Leeds Elementary School principal Andrew Briskey is in trouble for writing a letter in support of a sex offender's pardon using school letterhead. Leeds Elementary School principal Andrew Briskey is in trouble for writing a letter in support of a sex offender's pardon using school letterhead.
Dennis Phillips pleaded guilty to first degree sex abuse in 1998. He was pardoned for the crime yesterday. Dennis Phillips pleaded guilty to first degree sex abuse in 1998. He was pardoned for the crime yesterday.
Leeds Superintendent John Moore said the school system "absolutely does not" support the letter written by Principal Andrew Briskey. Leeds Superintendent John Moore said the school system "absolutely does not" support the letter written by Principal Andrew Briskey.
LEEDS, AL (WBRC) -

The principal of Leeds Elementary is in trouble for writing a letter using school stationary. The letter was in support of a pardon for a convicted sex offender.

Most concede Leeds Elementary principal Andrew Briskey has a right to express his opinion, but many are saying he does not need to bring the Leeds school system into any support for a sex offender.

Dennis Lynn Phillips was charged with second degree rape and sodomy in 1996 but he pleaded guilty to first degree sex abuse in 1998.

Wednesday, Phillips was up for a pardon before the Alabama Pardons and Paroles Board.

In support of the pardon, a letter was presented from Leeds Elementary principal Andrew Briskey written on school letter head. The letter was not authorized by Leeds superintendent John Moore.

"We certainly recognize principals and individuals have a right to express their opinion. The regret is the letter went out on school letterhead," Moore said.

The Alabama Pardons and Paroles Board granted the pardon. This upset head of the Victims of Crime and Leniency Organization, known as VOCAL.

"When he put it on the school letterhead and the board say that was one of the things they weighed in granting a pardon, that bothers me," Jeanette Grantham with VOCAL said.

Superintendent Moore would not say if Briskey's action puts his job in jeopardy. But there is a concern the letter made it seem like the school system was backing Phillips' pardon.

"We have a concern there. I would like people to know the school absolutely does not support that letter or message," Moore said.

"It's something that needs not happen again. Because it reflects on the school," VOCAL's Grantham added.

Grantham has also written of her concerns to the state school system.

Copyright 2013 WBRC. All rights reserved

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