Fort Mill Times

Pull the plug on this drama

OMG, it happened again. TMI about York County Councilman Paul Lindemann's personal life.

Two months after Lindemann (R-District 1) pleaded guilty to a lesser charge to settle a DUI case against him, his name surfaced again in the police blotter. This time, it involved a call officers responded to at the Fort Mill home of Ashley Martin, who ran an unsuccessful primary campaign last year against incumbent District 5 Councilman Curwood Chappell. Police were summoned after Lindemann's wife, Jennifer Lindemann, allegedly walked into Martin's home. Martin said she had invited Paul Lindemann there the night before for a dinner party.

Jennifer Lindemann, who police said showed up with the couple's baby in tow, was arrested and charged with criminal domestic violence after she was accused of hitting her husband during an altercation outside Martin's house. She was arrested again just last week and charged in connection with possession of prescription pills after a car she was riding in was pulled over by police, who said the driver had a suspended license.

Had enough of this soap opera?

So have we.

When Paul Lindemann was arrested on a DUI charge in Columbia last summer and the dashboard video of his tragically comic sobriety test was made public, it could have - indeed should have - ended his political career. However, he resisted calls from GOP leaders to resign from the council and, astonishingly, voters chose to send him back for another term rather than give Democratic challenger Marion Davenport a chance.

We thank Lindemann for his 29 months of service, but clearly he has too many personal issues to deal with to give his full attention to his constituents. District 1, which includes Tega Cay and most of Fort Mill, is too large and complex a constituency for a council member so prone to distraction.

Although it was his wife who ended up on the wrong side of the law in the latest chapter of this saga, Lindemann is clearly lacking when it comes to maturity and judgment. No matter why he ended up spending the night at a single woman's home, we can't think of many circumstances where that constitutes proper behavior for a husband and father. No matter the explanation, elected officials are rightly held to a higher standard and they are supposed to be role models for their community.

Lindemann, like former York County Coroner Doug McKown, should have resigned after the initial brush with the law. McKown dug his heels in, but eventually gave up his position after being caught up in another controversy. Now it's time for Lindemann to do the honorable thing - and what's best for him, his family and the public - and walk away.

This soap opera has jumped the shark.

Don't take that drink

It's prom time. Time to slip into that perfect gown or tailored tux before sliding behind the wheel of dad's prized possession and picking up your date. The stage is set for prom fun, but Fort Mill teens should remember having a good time doesn't mean drinking alcoholic beverages.

It doesn't mean driving with friends who drink alcohol, either, because the consequences of a series of bad choices could be the difference between life and death. We don't want to lose any of our youth to underage drinking. Yet, the threat is real.

In 2008, the S.C. Highway Patrol reported a spike in alcohol-related traffic fatalities in South Carolina, the second deadliest state for alcohol-related fatalities behind North Carolina. This year, teens were driving during two York County fatal collisions, but no alcohol was involved. That's to be applauded. But just last year, 103 fatal collisions happened in Troop 4 which includes Chester, Lancaster and York counties. Of that, 27 fatalities with nine teen drivers happened in York County, according to highway patrol. Four of those collisions were alcohol related.

Let's move to stop that trend this prom season.

Let's party, have fun and along the way think.

Don't take that drink.

Do not make choices this prom season that could change your life's path.

Or end it.