Maplewood City Council work session focuses on ethics violations

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The Maplewood City Council began with a work session Tuesday night, focusing on ethics standards — and allegations — for council members and commission members.

Councilwoman Chasity Mattox had been accused of ethics violations by Brad Jackson, a member of two Maplewood commissions. Councilman Shawn Faulkingham, who was on the committee that investigated, said that in two three-hour meetings they found “no verifiable evidence” of the allegations, and recommended dismissing the allegations.

Mattox thanked the committee, and said she was sorry that they had to use their break time for the investigations.

The council then discussed a proposed code of ethics for the Maplewood board and commission members. Councilman Matt Coriell said a draft was being worked on, and Mayor Knapper said she was sorry that a code of ethics wasn’t in place before it was needed.

Mattox then asked the council to initiate an investigation into Jackson’s conduct against her. Faulkingham said the council shouldn’t take it up.

“From what we’ve seen, I don’t think the the investigation of…the commission member really is in the purview of what the council should be investigating,” Faulkingham said. “We’re a legislative body. We investigate ethical violations, but I think that we would be crossing a line on this one.”

Mattox said she agrees with Faulkingham, but continued, “My complaint was first, and I still stand on that. We should not be investigating things that are said on social media… but when they involve things of a sexual nature, or somebody’s orientation, or religion, or race, or any of that, we should look into those types of things, and being that I was the person that was the subject of this, I obviously feel differently. Especially because he is someone who sits on not one but two commissions here and that has to stand for something.”

Mayor Knapper finally said, “I really think that you should go to the police…I also want to say I don’t agree with you receiving harassment, or anyone else.”

Mattox asked that if she went to the police would that constitute an ethics violation? Knapper said the city doesn’t have anything in place for that, “but I would think if you went to the police and go through that process and come back and you have a conviction, we can move as a body to address that then.

“But I have to say I am in agreement with deputy mayor Faulkingham as far as us conducting that investigation on a potential matter, let’s let the experts do that, which is the Maplewood police department,” she said.

Mattox said after the work session that “they investigated me for a lot less [comparing Jackson’s allegations against her], especially being that they have the evidence, and his ethics complaint against me was because of my ethics complaint against him. I understand their position, I just feel that I was investigated for a lot less; in retaliation.”

See also from St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Holleman: Maplewood City Council proposes additional ethics laws

Left to right: council members Matt Coriell, Krista Garcia, Eric Page, Mayor Nikylan Knapper, and council members Chasity Mattox and Shawn Faulkingham. Mattox explains her position. In the foreground, left to right: city clerk, Andrea Majoros, Chief of Police Matt Nighbor, and City Manager Amber Withycombe

 

 

 

1 COMMENT

  1. The city of Maplewood MO has a history of wrongful deeds done to citizens. I believe the city charter needs re-evaluation. When the Maplewood City Manager resigns as fast as the previous manager did, and no transparency of the event, I have to ask “what’s wrong with this picture?”

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