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Charlotte Area News

Former Charlotte Nonprofit CEO Found Not Guilty On Assault Charge

Patrick Graham
Charlotte Works

The former head of two Charlotte non-profits, Patrick Graham, has been found not guilty on charges of assaulting a female. Graham most recently led Charlotte Works, a group which promotes workforce development, and before that the Urban League of Central Carolinas. 

Graham calls the June 28 ruling “vindication.” 

A woman with whom Graham says he shares custody of a child made the accusations in March.  He was charged with misdemeanor assault on a female. According to arrest information, the woman accused him of placing her in a choke hold and striking her, resulting in a busted lip. 

Graham says she began punching him and he “responded by holding, restraining her, trying to stop [the punches].”

According to QCityMetro, Graham’s lawyer, Harold Cogdell, made the same case in court, saying rather than being the aggressor, Graham had been the “victim of multiple assaults by the accuser on March 22, 2018.”

“The difficulty of this is that a lot of times with male victims, while being attacked, we’re trying to protect ourselves and the perpetrator at the same time,” said Graham. 

Graham says the incident has changed his thinking about male victims of domestic violence.

“I’ve had to help many women who experienced [domestic violence], but I’ve often ignored men," he said. "I didn’t perceive it as domestic violence."

Charlotte Works placed Graham on paid administrative leave following the charges. Graham said he’s now resigned from his position to get involved with organizations that have “broader views of social and economic mobility.”