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Property once slated for Compass Academy could be auctioned

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An Aiken County building originally intended for a private school will be auctioned later this year if it’s not sold first.

The Compass Academy, a 53,000-square-foot building that sits on about 30 acres near Aiken, is on the market for $1.5 million. The auction is tentatively set for late October, and the opening bid will be disclosed once the date has been officially scheduled, said the court-appointed receiver, Columbia lawyer Sherri Lydon, in a statement.

The project was under construction by Jonathan “Jay” Warren Brooks, who was arrested in July and accused of taking investment money for a fictional entity called the Charles Howell Trust. A spokesperson for the South Carolina Attorney General’s office could not say at that time if Brooks’ arrest was connected to civil complaints filed against Compass Academy.

In March, a restraining order filed in the Fifth District of South Carolina Court of Common Pleas froze the accounts belonging to Brooks, J. Brooks Financial Inc., Brooks Real Estate Holdings and Compass Academy.

Lydon selected Leonardi Bracken Real Estate to market the property. The building, which is about 70 percent complete, will be marketed for future uses including a school, church, nursing home or conference center.

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