Committee alleges councilman brought 'scorn, embarrassment' to Metro Council

Dan Johnson (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Dan Johnson (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Published: Aug. 10, 2017 at 3:28 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 11, 2017 at 10:51 AM EDT
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Jessica Green (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Jessica Green (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Angela Leet (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Angela Leet (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Brandon Coan (Source: Michael Flynn, WAVE 3 News)
Brandon Coan (Source: Michael Flynn, WAVE 3 News)
Councilman Rick Blackwell (Source: WAVE 3 News)
Councilman Rick Blackwell (Source: WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – A charging committee filed paperwork Thursday to remove Louisville Metro councilman Dan Johnson from office.

The committee is made up of five council members – Jessica Green (D - District 1); Angela Leet (R – District 7); Brandon Coan (D - District 8); Rick Blackwell (D- District 12) and Robin Engel (R – District 22).

>>> WATCH: Connie's report here

The documents accuse Johnson (D – District 21) of misconduct stating he "has been verbally abusive and has leveled personal attacks on the character and motives of other members of the council, the staff and the public while failing to demonstrate respect for laws that protect citizens from harassment."

Controversy has surrounded Johnson since June 7 when Councilwoman Jessica Green accused Johnson of sexual harassment. Green claimed Johnson grabbed her rear end while they were posing for a photo. Another woman, Erin Hinson who is a legislative assistant for councilwoman Angela Leet, claimed she too was sexually harassed by Johnson.

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The documents also accuse Johnson of willful neglect in the performance of the duties of the office and state Johnson's actions "have exposed the Metro Council to scorn and embarrassment, have created unnecessary and destructive conflict with members of the council and other community leaders and citizens and have created a perception that council members are exempt from standards of common civility and decency, and have created a hostile work environment."

Johnson resigned from his party's caucus on June 29 but has said he will serve out the remainder of his term.

Since the paperwork has been filed, the Metro Council will hold a trial to decide whether Johnson should be removed from the council. However, Johnson could appeal the decision in Jefferson Circuit Court.

Since being formed after the merger of the City of Louisville and Jefferson County in 2003, the Metro Council has only held trial twice before - with Barbara Shanklin in 2013 and Judy Green in 2011. The council ultimately voted to remove Judy Green but did allow Shanklin to keep her seat.

Johnson requested medical leave Thursday shortly after a charging committee made up of his colleagues voted in favor of his removal from the Louisville Metro Council.

Johnson confirmed to WAVE 3 News he requested a medical leave of absence from the council. He said he is "in neck pain."

Green said Johnson should not be allowed to take a medical leave because her mother, Judy Green, was denied the leave when she served on the council. Jessica Green said Judy Green died from a heart attack 14 months after she was denied leave.

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