SC State chairman steps down

ORANGEBURG, S.C. (AP) -- The chairman of South Carolina State University's trustees board is out of that post two weeks after the state's only historically black public university fired eight high-level employees amid an internal investigation.

A university spokeswoman did not return messages Saturday from The Associated Press asking whether Jonathan Pinson's move was related to the investigation.

The probe led university president George Cooper to fire his top lawyer and aide, the vice president for student affairs, and the campus police chief.

Spokeswoman Erica Taylor said Friday that Pinson was stepping down as chairman to devote more time to his business but will continue serving on the S.C. State trustees board.

Termination letters to the fired S.C. State employees say they were guilty of unbecoming conduct that reflects unfavorable on the university.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)