Report suggests Bardstown mayor abused authority

Report suggests Bardstown mayor abused authority

BARDSTOWN, KY (WAVE) – A 44-page report suggests the mayor of Bardstown hacked into employees' e-mail addresses, instructed city employees to lie and abused his authority to interfere with a city council election.

The report detailing the three-month investigation into Mayor John Royalty was released by the city council Tuesday evening.

The Bardstown city council and private investigators held an executive closed session to discuss the possibly firing Royalty who is supposed to hold office until 2018.

During the session, a private investigator presented the report, which included 10 different findings stating Royalty used his power to try and alter this past council election.

The investigation said Royalty used his authority as mayor to try and alter the outcome of the city council election.

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"Mayor John Royalty ordered an employee to lie to the city council in order to obtain their iPads," Scott Crosbie, with MattMiller Crosbie Attorneys, told the council.
 
The target was Councilwoman Kecia Copeland, who was running for re-election. Investigators said Royalty used his power as mayor to get city employees to give him access to her private e-mail.

Investigators said he wanted to smear her name so she wouldn't get elected.
 
"Mayor John Royalty abused his authority to interfere with or affect results of the election," Crosbie said.
 
Royalty was not at the meeting because of a family emergency. His lawyer, Jason Floyd, was at the meeting and said the findings were news to him.

"We did not receive the report in advanced. We had 5,000 pages of documents and witness interviews and of course we haven't seen it yet," Floyd said.

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Copeland appeared emotional as the investigation was revealed.

Investigators said some of these findings could be criminal in nature.
 
The next step will be a hearing where the findings will be presented again. That hearing will determine whether or not Royalty keeps his job.

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