Local News

Community rallies behind Corinth Holders coach

Posted April 6, 2012
Updated April 7, 2012

— About 50 teens, parents, friends and family gathered in Clayton Friday evening to demonstrate their confidence in a Corinth Holders High School coach and teacher. 

They wore buttons bearing the face of James Joseph McNamara II and gave accounts of their relationships with him. All said they want to send a message to leaders in the Johnston County schools: "Coach Mac"  is not capable of the crime he stands accused of.

McNamara, 25, is suspended from his duties as teacher and wrestling coach, and he faces a charge of taking indecent liberties with a 16-year-old girl. Investigators say the alleged incident happened off school grounds.

Since his arrest, those who know McNamara have repeatedly spoken out in his defense.

"Every one of the kids plus the parents will say, to a person, he's never said an off-color remark. He does things the right way," said parent Mike Grindstaff. "We all recognize it and we believe in our hearts, there's no way this accusation is true."

"Coach Mac has done a lot for all of us," student Charlie Gray said. "He's helped me in the classroom, on the wrestling mat, football field. He's helped me become a better athlete, a better student, a better man in general."

Parents, students support accused coach Parents, students support accused coach

McNamara, who has been with Johnston County Schools for two years, is out of jail on a $5,000 bond. He adamantly denies the claims, and his family says that he is still trying to figure out what exactly the accusations are. 

At Friday's rally, Bruce Gray read a letter from McNamara to those who marched for him. "There've been moments in this fight that I've felt weary and unsure of how I can continue to fight," he wrote. "It's you that have given me the strength to fight this fight."

Friday evening's rally was the second major show of support for McNamara. About 20 students on the Corinth Holders High wrestling team, as well as some of their parents, came to his initial court appearance last week.


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  • OneLove Apr 9, 2012

    I do believe if the other students have had no problem then he was innocent. -------> There HAS to be a first victim.

  • barbstillkickin Apr 9, 2012

    No one knows anybody in that persons mind. I do believe if the other students have had no problem then he was innocent. Kids are cruel and if they get mad they know how to play the system. If they want a teacher fired they say he or she touched them and if they get mad at their parents they say they were hit and parents go to jail. Well you ask for it and now we got it. The kids run this world because they have more rights then adults. If I hit my sister or a friend I would just be told to straighten up but if kids do that the adult goes to jail. This is so sad and there has NOTHING TO DO WITH RACE. Monca so get off that wagon. It comes up in everything now days. If the Adults do not take back control this world has no chance I mean this Country. All other country's do not instantly take the child's word as the truth.

  • OneLove Apr 9, 2012

    We know him on the INSIDE. --> and my Mother-in-law knows my husband on the INSIDE. but she sure doesn't know him in the bedroom. You have no idea what he's capable of if he wants it bad enough.

  • JoCoNC Apr 6, 2012

    lol monca

  • Coretta Scott Thing Apr 6, 2012

    We know him on the INSIDE. If you have been following along, you would see alot of testaments to his character and no mention of his appearance.

    SO far there are 4 comments, and you might not know him half as well as you might think.

  • JoCoNC Apr 6, 2012

    Yeah, that's right monca... It's 'cuz he bathes daily. Good grief. There are plenty of skeevy looking people who are innocent, and plenty of clean cut folks who are guilty. This guy could look like Jabba the Hut and we would still be professing his innocence. We know him on the INSIDE. If you have been following along, you would see alot of testaments to his character and no mention of his appearance.

  • whatusay Apr 6, 2012

    This is almost the same as Trayvon/Zimmerman. We need to let the investigation be completed and the facts be known before making any arguments as to his guilt or innocence. The news media wants the public to decide the case. Most people's lives are ruined even if found to be innocent. Easy for people to form an opinion of guilt and they don't know anything except what the news media reports....shame..they don't even know the two people involved.

  • com_mon_sents Apr 6, 2012

    Good for them, glad they are standing behind him!!