Selma City Councilman makes court appearance, Judge, Prosecutor recuse themselves

Published 11:50 am Thursday, April 6, 2023

Selma City Councilman Clay Carmichael was arraigned Thursday in Selma Municipal Court for a harassment charge made by former Selma Information Technology Director John Kinnerson, Jr.

When Carmichael and Attorney Scott Brower appeared before Municipal Judge Brandon J. Wooten and Prosecutor Yusef Salaam, both Wooten and Salaam recused themselves from the case because of conflicting interests.

Salaam called Carmichael a friend. Wooten joked, “This goes above my pay.” Wooten’s wife, Danielle Wooten, is Planning and Development director for the City of Selma.

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Brower said that a court date would be determined in the future with a different judge and prosecutor. Brower said this doesn’t change the facts.

According to a Selma Police report filed by Kinnerson on January 12, Carmichael aggressively moved closer to Kinnerson, used foul language and called him a racial epithet during an argument in the hallway after an emergency city council meeting to discuss response to a tornado that tore through the city that day.

Carmichael turned himself into the Selma Police Department Tuesday on a two-month-old charge of harassment/intimidation of a former city employee. He posted a $1,000 bond on the class C misdemeanor charge that Kinnerson filed on Feb. 2. Carmichael publicly denied the allegations.

Kinnerson did not appear in court.

Carmichael had the support of family and friends in court, wife, Amy, Realtor AC Reeves, and Selma City Councilwoman Jannie Thomas.