While most candidates were out working the polling sites to  reach potential voters on election day, May 11, Bryan Keith “Chop” Thomas Muhammed, was sitting in the Orange County Jail.

Muhammed had been there since May 7 on a contempt of court warrant out of Harris County for failure to pay his child support.  He was released on May 14. However, even without making an appearance at local voting sites, he managed to defeat his opponents for a seat on the West Orange-Cove CISD board.

Those elected to seats on the board with the highest vote counts were Mary Ann Kirksey with 407 votes,  Hardy O’Neal with 404 votes, and Bryan “Chop” Thomas Muhammed with 288 votes. Defeated was Rickey Jacobs with 260 votes and Harry Barclay with 248 votes.

Muhammed was sworn in on Monday evening as board members held a meeting, according to a posted agenda online on the WOCCISD website.

On the Facebook website, Muhammed lists his children as Ashle Taylor, Jaida Muhammed, AJ Muhammed and Schade Thomas.

It is not known  for which children he owes the back child support payments.

The WO-C CISD has seven trustees serving staggered terms of three years. State law provides that a trustee election shall be held in May of each year for the purpose of electing trustees to vacancies that occur due to the expiration of the term of office of incumbents.

WO-C holds an at-large election with two or three seats on the ballot, with the recipients of the most votes earning election. Qualifications for office are to be a qualified (registered) voter, take the official oath of office, service without compensation, and have lived in the state for 12 months and the district for six months, according to the WOCCISD website.

Citizens are welcome to attend the Board of Trustees meeting held in the Administration Building board room, at 6 p.m. the last Monday of each month. The agenda is posted at the Administration Building, 505 15th Street, according to the WOCCISD website.

Several attempts to reach the superintendent, James Colbert Jr., for comment, after contacting their public information officer, were unsuccessful. In addition, Muhammed was “unavailable” for comment.