A heated dispute between public figures draws attention - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

A heated dispute between public figures draws attention

A heated dispute between two public figures involved in the controversial District 29 state senate race is getting attention.

Election Commission Chairman Greg Duckett says it was just a disagreement. But former Ophelia Ford challenger Terry Roland tells a different story. He says the Commission Chairman pointed his finger at him, criticized him... And blamed HIM for the controversy surrounding the election.

Last weekend's Gridiron show was all about making fun of public figures. But it's what happened in the audience DURING the show on Saturday between Terry Roland and Election Commission Chairman Greg Duckett that is still getting reviews...

"I'm not going to let anybody bully me," said Terry Roland.

Roland is the man who lost the state senate race to Ophelia Ford by 13 votes, the man who has driven the process to investigate alleged fraud there. He says he was only trying to mend fences. "I said 'no hard feelings'... I told him, 'it's not about us'... And he told me he didn't respect me and that it was my fault... Said I violated the integrity of the election process in Shelby County."

People who were there say the exchange became heated, that it involved raised voices and finger pointing. Shelby County Sheriff Mark Luttrell and County Commission Chairman Tom Moss intervened and asked them to take their differences elsewhere.

"I don't think it was appropriate on either person. But I do recognize human emotion. I don't know what was said before they got outside. I know they were both trying to make their points and even afterwards, I talked both to Terry and to Greg... Both said... He won't listen to me. He won't hear my side of it," said Commission Chair Tom Moss.

Roland is apologetic about the dispute, but still resolute.

"I am sorry that it happened... But I'm not going to let people push me around," he says.

We spoke with Duckett by phone tonight. He told us that "what Terry Roland is insinuating is an absolute falsehood. There was a professional disagreement between two individuals," he says and Roland "now wants to exploit that for personal gain."

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