A Metro section summary of a Feb. 16 article about Charles J. Moreland, the D.C. shadow representative, incorrectly stated that a civil bench warrant had been issued for his arrest. A warrent was authorized to be issued, but no warrant has been issued. (Published 3/1/ 91)
Charles J. Moreland, one of the District's three new statehood lobbyists in Congress, failed to appear yesterday at a hearing in a dispute over a $5,700 car loan, and a D.C. Superior Court judge authorized issuance of a civil bench warrant for his arrest, according to a court official and a lawyer in the case.
Moreland, a lawyer and political consultant who was elected a shadow representative in November, said he knew nothing about the hearing.
"Otherwise I would have been there," he said.
Moreland acknowledged last September that he had failed to file federal income tax returns for at least five years and his District returns for three years. He said he refused to file because he wanted to draw attention to the issue of statehood for the District, and viewed his intentional act as an asset in his campaign for office.
Yesterday, lawyer Stephen Millstein, who is representing Gloria Gaskins, said that Moreland had failed to pay Gaskins $5,700 plus $1,300 in interest on a 1988 loan to buy a 1983 Jaguar.
Millstein said Gaskins filed suit against Moreland last February, and won a default judgment against him when Moreland failed to answer the complaint.
Millstein said that he subpoenaed Moreland to appear at a routine hearing yesterday to answer questions about his finances, and that when Moreland failed to appear, he sought the bench warrant.
Moreland said he is not sure whether he still owes Gaskins money.
"I have to talk to my lawyer," he said. "I don't really recall that much about it."
According to documents provided by Millstein, Moreland's wife was served with the subpoena on Moreland's behalf at his home in Southeast Washington.
Moreland said yesterday, "Apparently she forgot to give it to me."
He said he would seek to have the bench warrant quashed.