Onslow County Board of Education SLEAZEBAG Jonathan Merritt’s resignation comes one day after we wrote our story about his recent arrest.
36-Year-Old Jonathan Merritt has been forced out of his Board of Education position after he was arrested Thursday, May 24 on the charges of failure to precaution against dangerous dogs, attack by a dangerous dog, two counts of failure of owner to control animals and failure to provide rabies vaccination tag after his dog attacked a 10-year-old boy.
Over the Memorial Day WeekendNews In Onslow learned that Merritt allegedly trained his dog to attack a non-family member. However, that dog has been killed and Merritt will have to pay for the crime. Officials said it wasn’t the first time Merritt allowed his dog to attack someone, although after an attack eight-months ago he signed a document stating he would keep the animal on his property or leashed at all times.
We understand that you can only control an animal to a certain extent but in this case, Merritt had a responsibility and failed.
Merritt wrote a letter of resignation to the Board of Education: “After deliberate conversation with my wife, family, and friends, coupled with strong advice from fellow Board Member Bob Williams, I believe it is in the best interest of all parties involved, most importantly the students of Onslow County, to submit the resignation of my seat on the Onslow County Board of Education effective immediately.”
According to police warrants, Merritt’s dog allegedly left his property and attacked a 10-year-old boy, sending the child to the hospital for medical attention.
If Merritt wanted to keep his name in good-standing with Onslow County, it was in his best interest to not listen to his family this time, who wanted him to stay seated as a Board Member like they coerced him to stay in 2017 and resign immediately. Merritt said although it was his family idea for him to stay, he said Williams thought leaving the board was the best option.
Merritt didn’t learn his lesson from his first arrest in 2017 but after looking at the jail time he could face with these new charges, it was best for him to voluntarily step away rather than be carried away in handcuffs when he goes to trial.
Merritt was elected in 2016 before the switch this year to a partisan election. He had two more years remaining but Pam Thomas, Board of Education Chair said the board will appoint someone to complete the remaining two years.
Merritt claimed that other factors were also a reason he decided to resign despite his recent arrest for playing the lead role in his decision. He said that he has no plans to run for the board again at this time (hopefully never) but will continue to advocate for education in Onslow County.