Sunday October 4th, 2015 7:51PM

Gainesville law firm issues response to atheist group

By Brian Stewart Reporter
GAINSEVILLE - Phillip Hartley of the Gainesville law firm Hartley, Harben, and Hawkins, LLP issued a statement to a Washington-based atheist group that is threatening a lawsuit against the Hall County school system over alleged coach-led prayer on the Chestatee High School football team.<br /> <br /> The letter was forwarded to Access North GA by Monica Miller, a lawyer for the Appignani Humanist Legal Center, the legal arm of the American Humanist Association, which is the group threatening the lawsuit.<br /> <br /> In the document, Hartley says Hall County school system Superintendent Will Schofield "is committed to working with all school administrators in Hall County to see that the rights of all students, staff and citizens are protected."<br /> <br /> It goes on to say that all future correspondence will go through their law firm.<br /> <br /> Miller sent the original letter, dated August 12, on behalf of a concerned citizen, to the school board and Schofield, outlining the alleged infractions.<br /> <br /> It contained a two week window for a response from Hall County.<br /> <br /> Miller asked that the school system tell her what "steps [they] will take to rectify this constitutional infringement [or face a lawsuit]."<br /> <br /> Hartley's response says Schofield and Chestatee principal Suzanne Jarrard "reviewed the concerns expressed in [the original] letter, all of which appear to involve incidents that occurred almost a year ago."<br /> <br /> It goes on to say that one of the coaches referenced by the original document is no longer employed in the Hall County school system.<br /> <br /> When asked for comment on the letter, Hartley declined, saying he "thinks the letter speaks for itself."<br /> <br /> No word from either side if a lawsuit is forthcoming.<br /> <br /> Miller has not issued an official response, but expects to give one by the end of the day Tuesday.
© Copyright 2015
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
2014 Top 10: Looking back at the top sports stories of the year
It was another year for the record books in 2014, mostly for the right reasons -- state championships, new challenges and new stars taking their turn to shine. But there were also plenty of big stories that reminded us that sports -- like life -- isn
11:55PM ( 9 months ago )
NASCAR K&N Pro Series schedules set for 2015
DAYTONA BEACH, FL - NASCAR announced recently the 2015 schedules for its top developmental regional touring series, the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East and NASCAR K&N Pro Series West.
2:00PM ( 9 months ago )
Lanierland boys final: Johnson makes history with win over Red Elephants <b> (VIDEO) </b>
Ever the aggressor on the court, Johnson
8:55AM ( 9 months ago )
Lanierland boys semifinals: Unbeatens Johnson, Red Elephants roll into finals
Both Gainesville and Johnson powered their way into the Lanierland Tournament finals on Monday. The two undefeated teams will meet Tuesday for the title at 8:30 p.m. at Chestatee.
10:01AM ( 9 months ago )
Lanierland girls semifinals: GHS, Lady Falcons advance to finals <b> (VIDEO) </b>
Flowery Branch and Gainesville each took impressive wins Monday to advance to the Lanierland Tournament finals...
10:00AM ( 9 months ago )
Girls basketball: Lady Tigers advance to Pickens Holiday finals
The Dawson County girls basketball advanced to the finals of the Pickens Holiday Classic after an 81-54 win over Riverwood Monday.
11:48PM ( 9 months ago )
High School Sports
Grass fire impacts rush hour traffic on 985
Rush hour traffic on I-985 was slowed by a grass fire Wednesay afternoon with one lane closed while firefighters fought the blaze.
10:19PM ( 9 months ago )
Judge denies motions to move, delay Tsarnaev trial
Lawyers for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev asked a federal appeals court Wednesday to overturn a judge's decision to not move his upcoming trial out of state.
10:02PM ( 9 months ago )
Sheriff: Man shot 2 on I-85 because he wanted car
A 22-year-old man shot two people who stopped to give him a ride on Interstate 85 in South Carolina on Christmas Eve because he wanted their car to drive to Georgia, a sheriff said Wednesday.
5:21PM ( 9 months ago )
Local/State News
FCA East-West contest gives one more shot for area stars to shine <b>(VIDEO)</b>
Talk to the coaches, players and fans lucky enough to take part on Friday, and it
12:13PM ( 9 months ago )
High School Football 2014: A special season brings with it many firsts
The FCA East-West All-Star Game wraps up the 2014 campaign tonight in Gainesville. And oh what a season it has been...
9:30PM ( 9 months ago )
Four area teams finish season ranked inside top 10
Four area teams ended the 2014 season ranked inside the top 10 of the Georgia Sports Writers Association Prep Football Poll.
10:55AM ( 9 months ago )
Friday Game Night
Over 10,000 Habersham EMC customers without power; Ga. Power also coping with outages
Power crews and public safety officials spent all day Sunday and into the night dealing with numerous downed trees, broken poles and broken power lines in White and surrounding counties.
By Dean Dyer
5:39PM ( 2 hours ago )
Freeman leads Falcons to another win, 48-21 over Texans
No need for another fourth-quarter comeback...
5:23PM ( 2 hours ago )
UPDATED: Ga. man dies in weather-related accident in NC, strong winds topple trees across North Ga.
Wind gusts of more than 40 mph wreaked havoc on North Georgia Sunday morning, bringing down trees and knocking out power for thousands of people.
4:15PM ( 3 hours ago )
Monday is deadline to register to vote in Nov. elections
Monday is the deadline to register to vote Nov. 3 when Hall County residents will be asked to approve an extension of the education sales tax and a number of city elections will be held.
11:30AM ( 8 hours ago )
Town hall on developmental disabilities coming to Gainesville
A Georgia non-profit that provides parental family support, advocacy and training for people with developmental disabilities is coming to Gainesville again to host a town hall session.
10:52AM ( 8 hours ago )