Former principal cleared of sex charges

CUMBERLAND COUNTY "This has opened my eyes to God," former principal Ronald Parker said. "Without His help I don't know if I could pull through this or not."

Parker says he can finally smile and breathe easy, because the past year, he says, was a nightmare.

"You watch every word that comes out of your mouth because you are told anything can be used against you so you don't try and say anything to anybody in a situation like this," Parker said.

Parker was principal at Eastover Central Elementary School last June when he was arrested on sex charges involving a 3-year-old child. The child was not a student at the school and Parker won't say how he knew the child.

Parker was scheduled to be arraigned on the felony charges this week, but late last Friday, prosecutors filed a document dropping the charges.

In the document, prosecutors said they dismissed the case, because there was insufficient evidence.

Parker says his wife, Sue, their friends and church family never doubted his innocence.

Now, he wants his old job back, his dignity and reputation restored.

"I want to finish on a high note," Parker said. "Thats going to be tough because not everybody is going to believe me because there were accusations.

Still, now for the first time in nearly a year, Parker can think about going back to his first love.

"Thirty-eight years I've been with kids," Parker said. "I've never had inkling to hurt any child. Children are my life, and they always have been."

After his arrest, Parker was transferred to a non-teaching job in the school system. A school spokesperson said there has been no determination on his job status.

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