• Gaston Co. commissioner won't resign after guilty plea for unlawfully touching woman

    By: Ken Lemon

    Updated:

    GASTON COUNTY, N.C. - A Gaston County commissioner who pleaded guilty to unlawfully touching a woman said he has no plans to step down.

    The victim told Channel 9 that Don Grant has to go.

    Channel 9 received the first draft of the resolution Thursday afternoon.

    [READ MORE: Arrest warrants taken out against Gaston County commissioner for sexual battery]

    [PAST COVERAGE: Gaston County commissioner charged with sexual battery, assault]

    It was drafted after Grant pleaded guilty of unlawfully touching a woman in her home.

    The board of commissioners will hold a special meeting Tuesday night, present him with the resolution and ask him to step down.

    Grant left court Wednesday defiant.

    "Why should I resign?" Grant asked.

    Grant’s fellow county commissioners spelled out the reasons in a resolution and asked the embattled county commissioner to resign.

    "We want the citizens to know we are taking this seriously,” chairman Chad Brown said.

    The resolution also requests that Grant apologizes to the citizens of Gaston County and the victim, Amanda Sharpe.

    "He violated my family,” Sharpe said.

    Last year, Sharpe said she went to Grant's extermination company looking for help with bed bugs.

    She said Grant got her alone in her bedroom and asked to see the bed bug bites. She showed him her upper back and he did something unexpected.

    "He pulled my shirt up, then pulled my shirt out and touched me,” Sharpe said.

    Sharpe said Grant then asked to check for bug bites in between her legs.

    “Angry and hurt,” Sharpe said.

    Sharpe said she escorted him out. She then learned he was a county commissioner.

    “He shouldn't be a role model for the community,” Sharpe said.

    By law, Grant can’t be forced out of office because the crime he pleaded guilty to is a misdemeanor, not a felony.

    "Our children are looking up to him,” Sharpe said. “He has a say-so in very important matters for Gastonia. He is now convicted of a crime and he shouldn't be representing our community."

    Grant didn’t return Channel 9’s phone call.

    The chairman of the board of commissioners said all of the commissioners have talked to him and that Grant knows how they feel.

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