Embattled San Diego Mayor to Deliver Speech at Benefit for Sex Assault Victims

Wednesday, 17 Jul 2013 02:25 PM

 

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink

San Diego Mayor Bob Filner, who has been fending off sexual harrasment charges at City Hall, is scheduled to deliver the keynote speech at a benefit for sexual assault victims.

The mayor, who is under pressure to resign amid accusations from several women, was to be honored by National Military Women Veterans Association of America. But Filner was stripped of the lifetime leadership award and has instead agreed to be the main speaker, according to 10News.com.

Editor’s Note: New 'Obamacare Survival Guide' Reveals Dangers Ahead for Your Healthcare

Filner, 70, made it clear he will not heed the calls for his resignation from former Councilwoman Donna Frye and others within his party, even as they held a news conference this week to divulge details of allegations they said show a dangerous pattern of abuse by the city's first Democratic leader in two decades.

"I'm not going to resign, and here's why," Filner, a former U.S. congressman, said Monday in a statement. "As your elected mayor, I fully expect to be accountable to the citizens of San Diego for all of my actions. But as a citizen of this country, I also expect — and am entitled to — due process, and the opportunity to respond in a fair and impartial venue to specific allegations. I do not believe I am guilty of sexual harassment, and I believe a full presentation of the facts will vindicate me."

Frye rocked Filner's support base when she went public with the accusations last week during a news conference and asked him to step down. She did not give specifics until Monday when she read statements to the media from two people who said they were constituents, though they were not named.

Both say the mayor — who was engaged at the time — tried to forcibly kiss them during separate encounters.

"We will all fail the women of our city if we ask them to continue to meet with this man," said Frye, who worked briefly for the mayor as his director of open government.

She later added, "Bob Filner is tragically unsafe for any woman to approach."

The women's veterans' group said in a statement that it stripped Filner of his award because: "We do not tolerate sexual discrimination at any level within our society."

Still, the group did not disinvite the mayor from the August award gala, instead announcing that he will address the scandal in a speech, according to 10News.com.

"He is now the keynote speaker on these injustices," said the group

Filner apologized for his behavior last week after Frye first went public with the allegations. The mayor said he failed to respect women who work for him and he intimidated them at times. Without going into details, Filner called his behavior wrong and said he needed help. He pleaded with voters for patience.

Two attorneys accompanying Frye Monday said Filner's inappropriate behavior was so common at City Hall that employees had coined the term "The Filner Dance" to describe how workers dodge his sexual advances. "The Filner Headlock" was used to describe how the mayor would wrap his arm around the neck of a female worker, the attorneys said.

Filner's former fiancee, who ended their engagement early last week just before the allegations became public, gave details about the behavior behind the breakup in a statement on Monday.

"While I had heard rumors that he was engaging in sexual relationships with other women, I was never able to determine their validity," Bronwyn Ingram said in the statement, according to U-T San Diego.

"However, as Bob's behavior continued to become more aggressive, standard decorum seemed to disappear. Bob recently began texting other women sexually explicit messages and setting up dates while in my presence and within my line of vision."

Marco Gonzalez, a former Filner supporter, said he is representing one employee who allegedly had been harassed by the mayor. He said his client has worked for Filner for six months and has known him for years.

A handful of supporters held signs at the news conference outside City Hall that read: "Due process for Mayor Filner." Some yelled at Frye and the attorneys, saying the allegations were hearsay.

Frye read the statements from women she called constituents No. 1 and No. 2.

Editor’s Note: New 'Obamacare Survival Guide' Reveals Dangers Ahead for Your Healthcare

The first constituent said the mayor asked his staffer to leave the room and then asked her if she was single.

She said she told Filner that he had a beautiful fiancee and that the mayor responded that he wanted to go out with her and kiss her. Filner then grabbed her and kissed her before she was able to push him away and leave the room, according to the statement.

In a statement from constituent No. 2, Filner allegedly made sexual overtures before grabbing her on the street to kiss her.

The victim was "unnerved" by the advance but did not want to be rude and still gave Filner a ride in her car, where he put his hand in her bra and tried to kiss her again, according to the statement.

© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
You May Also Like

Scientists Warn Florida Governor of Threat From Climate Change

Tuesday, 19 Aug 2014 20:06 PM

Five climate scientists warned Florida Governor Rick Scott in a meeting on Tuesday that a steadily rising ocean was a ma . . .

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Ferguson Protests Are About Class, Not Race

Tuesday, 19 Aug 2014 19:26 PM

The unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, is not about racism but about class warfare and how poor people are not advancing in A . . .

Rep. Paul Ryan: GOP Must Learn From Mistakes in War on Poverty

Tuesday, 19 Aug 2014 17:46 PM

Republicans often aren't taken seriously in their effort to alleviate poverty, Rep. Paul Ryan admits, and he suggested t . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved