Lawsuit claims Southern's band director asked for kickbacks to schedule performances
BATON ROUGE- A lawsuit against Southern University, its band director and a number of other campus officials claims the university's band director asked for a kickback to have the famous Southern band perform at an event.
White Enterprises of Louisiana LLC and Octagon Media sued the university asking for damages it incurred from having to pay out refunds after the band didn't show up for events.
"It was going to be for East Baton Rouge Parish school kids to come to Southern to hear the band play," Attorney for Octagon Media, Amy Newsom said.
The lawsuit alleges Nathan Haymer asked for a ten percent kickback to have the band and Dancing Dolls perform at events they scheduled.
Attorneys wrote in the lawsuit Haymer sent a text message asking to be paid: "The ten percent needs to be made payable to me so that the staff can be properly compensated. I am asking for you to hide this ten percent in your percentage charge from your business. If this cannot be done, please let me know."
When Newsom's client refused “to pay Mr. Haymer the kickback, he didn't show up to the event," Newsom said.
"Many of the school children were disappointed, and my client suffered financial losses as a result of Mr. Haymer's actions."
Newsom believes Southern University did not do anything about the allegations.
The school said it would not comment on this issue due to the pending litigation, but Haymer's brother, Niles Haymer, said he is representing him in a personal capacity.
"These are text messages from almost three years ago," Niles Haymer said. "So, my brother doesn't believe he sent anything like that. He doesn't get paid for activities like that. So he doesn't believe he sent the messages like that. But he does believe the plaintiff texted back on several issues."
Haymer could not be found by a news crew on campus Monday.
Niles Haymer said this issue is about a breach of contract, not the messages.
"The Southern University band director has done an excellent job," Haymer, the brother, said. "Success comes with these problems. You will always have people saying you are too successful and we will bring you down. This is an opportunity for the plaintiff to drag the Southern band director in the mud."
Newsom disagrees and said the text messages Haymer sent her client tell the real story and she believes the band director violated the public's trust.
"An employee on their salary is getting paid by Southern... writing, asking for a kickback... and nothing has been done," Newsom said.
If you would like to read the lawsuit, click HERE.