Mayor Filner talks to News 8 about sexual harassment allegations - 100.7 Jack FM San Diego Radio & DSC- sandiegojack

Mayor Filner talks to News 8 about sexual harassment allegations

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News conference held July 15, 2013 by Former Councilwoman Donna Frye and lawyers Cory Briggs and Marco Gonzalez. News conference held July 15, 2013 by Former Councilwoman Donna Frye and lawyers Cory Briggs and Marco Gonzalez.

SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Embattled Mayor Bob Filner told News 8 Monday he's not going to resign, hours after three former supporters told the media specific details about the sexual harassment allegations made against him.

News 8's Phil Blauer sat down with Filner Monday afternoon and asked him about the controversy.

"I'm very concerned that people think that's how I treated them, and we have a lot of introspection and work to do on that," Filner said. "But I think all fair-minded San Diegans would agree that there ought to be a fair and impartial investigative process. Not press conferences, not anonymous sources, but an impartial investigation. And we'll cooperate obviously, fully with that, and I think I'll be vindicated at the end."

Filner responded to Marco Gonzalez's claims about specific accusations involving the "Filner headlock" and other alleged behavior on his part.

"I certainly don't see myself that way. If I've offended people I apologize and we'll try to make that right by any individual person. Clearly though, people take what is a demonstrable (sic) politician who's been that way for his whole political life, they take it offensively and I need to work on that," Filner said.

THIS IS A STORY UPDATE. For an earlier version, read below.

SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) – Three of Mayor Filner's former supporters spoke to the public again Monday, revealing examples of Mayor Filner's sexual advances on women.

Former Councilwoman Donna Frye and lawyers Cory Briggs and Marco Gonzalez held their news conference around 11 a.m., where each called for Filner to resign. Gonzalez cited the "Filner headlock," which according to Gonzalez the mayor would use to separate a woman from a group. He would allegedly put his arm around a woman, ask if she has a significant other, and say he wants to kiss her.

Frye, who spoke first, stated: "Bob Filner is tragically unsafe for any woman to approach."

Meanwhile, the woman who called off her engagement to Filner last week, is now joining the call for him to resign. Bronwyn Ingram tells the U-T she dumped the mayor after he sent sexually explicit text messages to other women.

Additionally, one of the alleged victims, who is choosing to remain anonymous, told the San Diego Reader that Mayor Filner kissed her during a meet and greet event at city hall several months ago.

All indications so far from Filner show he is going to fight for his job. In response to sexual harassment allegations and calls for his resignation, Filner released the following statement Monday, July 15:

"I'm not going to resign, and here's why," said Filner. "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," said Filner.

"Some who have called for my resignation have justified it with the claim that the operations of the City will somehow be compromised by the current controversy," said Filner.

Filner also announced appointments intended to strengthen the city's management system:

"Today I am announcing the appointment of Walt Ekard as Interim Chief Operating Officer of the City of San Diego. Mr. Ekard is perhaps the most respected public administrator in the region and is nationally recognized for his successful and innovative management of the County of San Diego for over 14 years," said Filner.

"Mr. Ekard has appointed Scott Chadwick, who has done an outstanding job as our Interim Chief Operating Officer, to become his Assistant Chief Operating Officer, and has also appointed Interim Director Judy VonKalinowski as the City's permanent Human Resources Director," said Filner.

"Today's announcements make clear the operations of City government will not be negatively impacted," said Filner.

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