On Aug. 14, I posted briefly about the continuing controversy down in North Carolina’s coast. Democratic State Sen. RC Soles has been accused of molestation.

In the piece on Aug. 14, I incorrectly stated two young men had accused the senator of misconduct. Only one has. Twenty-seven-year-old Stacy Scott has claimed Soles attempted to fondle him when he was 15 years old, that he objected and that Soles paid him not to tell anyone. Seventeen-year-old Allen Strickland, whose house was paid for by Soles, denies a sexual relationship between him and Soles.

News channel WWAY has found that Soles has financial connections to several young men.

I’m not sold on the allegations. In fact, I’m starting to think RC Soles might be the possible victim of gay and pedophile baiting.

I’ll let you make up your own mind:

WWAY: Interview with Soles
Star-News: Allen Strickland interview
Star-News: Soles denies molesting teen

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N.C. state senator accused of molestation

rcsolesWhere in the hell have I been?

For a couple of weeks, TV news down on the North Carolina coast has been reporting of sexual misconduct allegations thrown toward 74-year-old Democratic N.C. State Sen. R.C. Soles.

It seems there are two men, a 17-year-old and a 27-year-old, who claim the senator had a sexual relationship with them. See updated Aug. 17 post.

The 17-year-old’s house just burnt down. The house, it seems, was bought and paid for by Sen. Soles, who says the teen was merely a “good friend,” and the house a part of an “agreement” the two had. The 27-year-old says Soles fondled him when he was 15.

News channel WWAY reports:

Seventeen-year-old Allen Strickland has been in the news for weeks, ever since his new house in Tabor City caught fire in an apparent arson. On July 1, a few weeks before that fire, Allen and a few of his friends, all clients of State Sen. R.C. Soles, sat down with WWAY’s Ann McAdams to discuss problems they were having with the Senator. They told Ann about being called to testify before the FBI, about possible misconduct on the part of the Senator. Ann asked Allen what they testified about. “About molestation, about prostitution,” Strickland said.

“I went to Raleigh and went before the grand jury and they questioned me for about six-and-a-half hours,” said Jackie Jordan, one of Soles’s clients.

This wasn’t the first time we’d heard stories like this. A year ago, another one of Sen. Soles’s clients named Stacey Scott talked to us about his testimony before the FBI. His recollection of the line of questioning was very similar.

“The FBI is investigating him, as far as I know, for embezzlement, arson, child molestation,” Scott said. “He (Soles) did try to molest me when I was 15 years old, and I have not told the feds that. He tried to grab by my genitalia and I backed off and I said, ‘You know my dad would kill you.’ He said, ‘Please don’t tell nobody,’ and he gave me a thousand dollars.”

Shortly after Scott testified for the grand jury, he says he was picked up by two private investigators for Soles, who spent hours asking him questions.

“‘Has R.C. Soles ever molested you?’ ‘Has he ever paid you to do certain things like burn down Dewey Hill’s grocery store and everything,’ which is what I was questioned about in federal court,” Scott said.

Sen. Soles is the state’s longest serving senator and permanent chair of the Democratic caucus.

I’m in Pittsburgh for the Netroots Nation conference, of course, so I really haven’t had the time to look at this in-depth more later.