Elections

Records show financial issues for some Charlotte City Council at-large candidates

Several candidates for at-large seats on Charlotte City Council have had financial setbacks, according to court records.

The Observer checked the candidates’ criminal and civil records, bankruptcies and voting records.

Darrell Bonapart

Bonapart had a series of financial problems he said stemmed in part from the effects of a disability when he left the Army. The issues have been previously reported by the Observer.

In 2008 the east Charlotte Democrat filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, with liabilities of nearly $124,000. The case was dismissed the following year. He also faced multiple foreclosure attempts on his home near Eastland Mall.

In 2007, a Superior Court judge ordered him to pay CitiFinancial $7,767 to resolve a loan dispute. He has said he took out a loan for a friend who failed to repay. Records show that he twice avoided foreclosure in 2013.

A disabled veteran, Bonapart has said his problems began after an employer failed to rehire him after he was discharged from the military. He said he was unable to work for a year while a disability hearing was under way. He called the bankruptcy filing “bad advice” from an attorney.

“All of my stuff is old news,” Bonapart said. “It’s way behind me.”

Until recently Bonapart worked for the Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America helping others facing foreclosure. Now he’s a consultant for Reverse Mortgage Solutions.

Shawn Greeson

Greeson filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2008, court records show.

Last year Greeson, a Democrat from Plaza Midwood, was elected as Mecklenburg Soil and Water Conservation District Supervisor.

Asked to comment about the bankruptcy filing, Greeson emailed: “As of 8/20/2015 my credit score is 745.” He declined to elaborate.

James Mitchell

Records show James Mitchell still owes a bank money in a dispute stemming from his 2010 divorce. The debt has been previously reported by the Observer.

The divorce contributed to financial problems for Mitchell and his ex-wife. Their home off Sunset Road was foreclosed on. Court records show he still owes SunTrust Bank $2,303 from a 2010 court judgment.

Mitchell, a Democrat, said he’s reached a settlement agreement with the bank.

“I’m moving forward to get that resolved, and SunTrust has been working with me,” he said.

David Michael Rice

Rice, a Republican, filed for bankruptcy in 2000 and later had a string of liens against his Grier Heights property. The Observer reported the issues when Rice previously ran for council.

Records show he filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy protection in 2000. He had eight property tax liens filed against him since. All were paid.

He faced foreclosure in 2009. The city demolished the house in 2010.

Rice could not be reached. Earlier he acknowledged financial issues. “Just problems like anybody else would have,” he once said, adding, “It wouldn’t affect my ability to manage budgets.”

Meet the candidates in Charlotte’s at-large City Council primary

Read profiles of other Democrats vying to be the party’s three Charlotte City Council at-large nominees in Charlotte’s Sept. 15 primary. There is no Republican primary, with candidates Pablo Carvajal, John K. Powell Jr. and David Michael Rice appearing on the Nov. 3 ballot.

▪ Laurence Bibbs cites ‘fresh perspective’

▪ Darrell Bonapart advocates for east, west sides

▪ Bruce Clark to focus on economic mobility

▪ Julie Eiselt cites anti-crime efforts

▪ Claire Fallon pushes for public safety

▪ Sean Gautam cites civic experience

▪ Shawn Greeson focuses on environment, poverty

▪ Mo Idlibby cites legal experience

▪ Vi Lyles cites experience with city, council

▪ Billy Maddalon said LGBT vote spurred him to run

▪ James ‘Smuggie’ Mitchell to focus on sustainable neighborhoods

▪ Aaron Sanders would focus on services

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