(With update at 1:20 p.m., 3/14/12; please see end of post.)
Campus Crest Communities CEO Ted Rollins offered his ex wife $300,000 to settle their Alabama divorce case just weeks after stating under oath that he made $50,000 a year.
If you are thinking those numbers don't add up, join the crowd. Sherry Carroll Rollins, who lives in Birmingham with the couple's daughters Sarah and Emma, rejected the offer for a variety of reasons. But she quickly noted the incongruity between the settlement offer and Ted Rollins's sworn statement about his finances. Ms. Rollins discussed the settlement offer during the third installment of a videotaped interview with Legal Schnauzer. (See the interview at the end of this post.)
Ted Rollins swore in a child-support affidavit, called a CS-41 form in Alabama, that he made $50,000.04 a year from employment with Reynolds Mortgage and Investment Company of Brentwood, Tennessee. Sherry Rollins said she knew the sworn statement was false for a couple of reasons--one being that she called Ken Reynolds, the head of Reynolds Mortgage, and he said that Ted Rollins had never worked for him.
"The other reason I know it's fictitious is that (Ted) offered me $300,000 outside of court, after I had filed my appeal . . . ," Sherry Rollins said. "A guy making $50,000 a year probably does not have $300,000 to offer.
"I also know he has extravagant taste and lives an extravagant lifestyle, with very nice houses, and $50,000 a year doesn't do that."
Public documents show that Ted Rollins was president and/or CEO of both St. James Capital LLC and Campus Crest Communities at different times during the divorce litigation. But his CS-41 form makes no mention of either company--or of any income he derived from them.
The Alabama Court of Civil Appeals, as it often does, rubber-stamped the decision of Shelby County Circuit Judge D. Al Crowson, meaning Ms. Rollins' appeal failed. That left her with $1,315 a month in combined child support and alimony to raise two daughters. Crowson's ruling was so stunningly favorable toward Ted Rollins that his ex wife and two daughters have been on food stamps in Alabama.
As has been my practice since I started reporting on Rollins v. Rollins, I sent Mr. Rollins written questions about the false-swearing allegations well in advance of my post on the subject, giving him every opportunity to respond or explain himself. As has been Mr. Rollins' practice, he failed to respond to our questions.
For the record, here are the questions that we posed to Ted Rollins--and he ignored:
Following are questions, sent in writing per your request, regarding your involvement in the Rollins v. Rollins divorce case and Campus Crest Communities.
I. The CS-41 Affidavit You Filed Regarding Child Support in Alabama
Sherry Carroll Rollins, your ex wife, states in an interview that information on your CS-41 form is false and that your child-support payments in Alabama are based on perjury and fraud. Ms. Rollins states that she spoke with Ken Reynolds, of Reynolds Mortgage Company in Brentwood, TN, and she called him because your child-support payment was two months late at the time. Ms. Rollins states that Mr. Reynolds told her you had never worked for him, even though your CS-41 form says you did. Ms. Rollins also states that the lifestyle you lived while married to her indicates your income was substantially higher than $50,000.04 a year.
A. Do you have any documentation to prove you worked for Reynolds Mortgage Company? Will you provide me with a copy of those documents?
B. Do you have any documentation to prove that your only income was $50,000.04 from Reynolds Mortgage, that you had no other sources of income at the time?
C. Do you have any documentation regarding the existence of St. James Capital LLC and Campus Crest Communities at the time? Did you derive any income from those entities?
C. Do you have other sources of income now? If so, are you aware that Alabama law would allow for adjustment in child-support payments, based on a change in your financial status?
D. Are you aware that the CS-41 is a sworn affidavit, which you signed under penalty of perjury? Are you aware that swearing falsely in an official proceeding constitutes perjury in the first degree, a Class C felony in Alabama?
I ask that you respond to these questions by 9 a.m. CDT on Monday, March 5
Is this a serious matter? Mr. Rollins' actions, as described by his ex wife, appear to constitute perjury under Alabama law. And here is how the Code of Alabama defines the crime:
Section 13A-10-101 - Perjury in the first degree.
(a) A person commits the crime of perjury in the first degree when in any official proceeding he swears falsely and his false statement is material to the proceeding in which it is made.
(b) Perjury in the first degree is a Class C felony.
Our research on the Rollins v. Rollins divorce case indicates that Ted Rollins is a stunningly arrogant fellow. Perhaps that comes with belonging to one of the nation's wealthiest families, the folks behind Orkin Pest Control and its parent company, Rollins Inc. of Atlanta. Two of Ted's cousins, R. Randall Rollins and Gary Rollins, run Rollins Inc. and are billionaires (with a "b"). St. James Capital was a joint venture between Ted and Randall Rollins, so there is a pretty good chance it was a profitable enterprise. And yet, Ted Rollins stated under oath that he had made no money from it.
How arrogant is Ted Rollins? For one, he apparently doesn't think laws that require court testimony to be truthful apply to him--as they do to commoners. For another example, consider how he treated a woman who was married to him for 14 years and produced two children:
Settlement negotiations in a lawsuit tend to be filled with twists and turns, and details on the Rollins settlement discussions are sketchy. Sherry Rollins has discussed the process with me on several occasions, and I know that she was represented during the negotiations by a Birmingham lawyer named Sam Holmes. Ms. Rollins hired Holmes after her trial attorney, MaryLee Abele, refused to become engaged in the appellate process.
Either way, this tell us that Ted Rollins, in addition to being ethically challenged, is preposterously cheap. Here is another oddity about the settlement negotiations: A woman named Theresea Kilgore accompanied Sherry Rollins to the negotiations, which were conducted at the Harbert Center downtown. Ms. Kilgore repeatedly encouraged Ms. Rollins to accept various low-ball offers from Ted Rollins.
Ms. Rollins refused, and I understand that she worked the settlement figure up to about $300,000 and was prepared to accept that on one condition--that Ted Rollins stay out of her life, and the lives of her children, forever. Ted Rollins, I'm told, rejected that proviso, and the negotiations broke down.
Many questions remain about the Rollins divorce negotiations. For one, who on earth is Theresea Kilgore, and why was she involved, supposedly as Sherry Rollins' helper/supporter? You can check out Ms. Kilgore's Facebook page here.
For another, why was Sherry Rollins willing to accept a relatively paltry sum, $300,000, in order to get Ted Rollins out of her life? For an idea of how bad a deal this would have been for Ms. Rollins, let's revisit our post about the divorce of wrestling icon Hulk Hogan. In that one, Hulk coughed up a $3-million property settlement, along with 70 percent of the couple's liquid assets and 40 percent of his various companies, plus a chunk of investment assets and various vehicles.
And yet, Sherry Rollins was willing to walk away for about $300,000--from a man whose net worth might exceed that of Hulk Hogan? She was willing to give up pretty much any claims to substantial marital assets in order to be free from Ted Rollins?
One of the outcomes of many divorces, of course, is that the ex spouses leave hating each other. That often is driven by misconduct within the marriage, and Sherry Rollins alleged adultery in her original divorce complaint that was filed in South Carolina.
But it appears that Ms. Rollins feelings for her ex go beyond standard loathing, even the kind that can result from adultery. She was willing to accept probably way less than one-tenth the amount she was entitled to under the law in order to be rid of Ted Rollins--to have him out of her life and the lives of her children.
That indicates that Sherry Rollins had concerns about Ted Rollins that go beyond the standard "I hate your guts" variety in a divorce case. It indicates she had concerns that go beyond infidelity. What were those concerns?
We will be examining that question in upcoming posts.
UPDATE (at 1:15 p.m., 3/14/12)
We have new details about settlement negotiations in the Rollins v. Rollins divorce case:
Negotiations did not break down during the session at the Harbert Center. Ted Rollins offered Sherry Rollins $300,000 and gave her five days to accept it. He then faxed her three documents to sign in order to receive the money. The documents included:
1. A form stating that Ms. Rollins would never take him back to court for any raise in alimony or child support;
2. A document stating that Ted Rollins was a fit and good parent and was equally fit as Sherry Rollins;
3. A document stating that Sherry Rollins fled to Alabama and hid the children from him for two years and would not let him see them.
Ms. Rollins was to sign the three documents and withdraw her appeal. She refused to sign the documents and withdraw the appeal--and that's when Mr. Rollins withdrew the $300,000 offer.
My take on these new details? It appears that Mr. Rollins was trying to force his ex wife to sign at least two documents (Nos. 2 and 3 above) that were based on false information. We've already shown, through the Alabama CS-41 form, that Mr. Rollins has a tendency to sign false documents under oath. Now it appears he tries to coerce other individuals into doing the same thing.