you're reading...

Cornelius News

Cornelius man authored hate mail to CMS superintendent

Aug. 20. The anonymous letter writer who sent a racist message to the new superintendent of Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools is a white 72-year-old Cornelius resident who lives a stone’s throw from the western boundary of Cornelius Elementary School.

The new CMS superintendent, Earnest Winston, is black.


The email letter said, in part, “Do you REALLY think you deserve to be Superintendent of Schools?  Can you HONESTLY say you are not a RACIST BIGOT? Just remember Winston, karma is a ‘one-eyed bitch’ and I hope she comes for you in the very near future.” It also had a typo, with the word night spelled with an m.

The message closed with the racial epithet decent people despise, repeated three times.

A phone number associated with the man has been disconnected. He did not respond to email or a Facebook message from Cornelius Today.

CMS officials said his use of the word “karma” could be viewed as a threat, although he is not considered a threat to students.

The message from the Cornelius resident came in through the CMS “Let’s Talk” online communications feature.

While it can appear anonymous, expert computer techs can identify where messages come from by tracking Internet Service Provider addresses.

CMS security did so, and along with a Cornelius PD officer, went to the subject’s home and “conducted a knock and talk.”

“The subject immediately admitted that he was the one that sent the message and felt like this was within his right to do so,” an internal CMS document says.

After a short conversation the 72-year-old asked that the officer and the CMS employee leave his property, stating “that this only makes matters worse.”

Hateful mail, including the use of the n-word, is protected free speech.

The man has not committed any criminal offense, nevertheless, Mayor Woody Washam said the man’s email was “completely deplorable.”


“There is no place for this kind of dialogue in our society much less coming from within our town,” Washam said.

The 72-year-old man was not arrested, but the FBI has been alerted.

His Facebook page is full of angry and hostile political posts.

CMS said the man was told that any emails or message in the future that rises to the level of a criminal offense would be pursued with criminal charges.

An intelligence file has been created under his name.

A CMS official has provided the man’s name but he has not been charged with a crime. Cornelius Today will not release his name.