Ocala, Florida — The Ocala City Council on Tuesday initiated the process to suspend Ocala Police Chief Kenneth Gregory Graham, who has been accused of Sexual Harassment, Hostile Treatment, Retaliation, and Discrimination.
The vote, initiated by council president Jim Hilty, passed 4 to 1 — Councilman Jay Musleh voted against the suspension.
Hilty said that he was not passing judgment, but felt suspending the chief was the right thing to do for the citizens.
Later in the meeting, Hilty insinuated that the chief may be in danger if he remained at the police department.
Mayor Kent Guinn was outraged at the move by the council, and he immediately made it known. In fact, he made it clear that he was not concerned about the victims in anyway. Instead, he was emphatic about the fact that he was only concerned about the chief’s career.
Approximately 17 minutes and 48 seconds into the video, a citizens said, “Ask the Mayor to step down.”
The comment was made while the attorney who filed the September 15 complaint, Attorney Bobi J. Frank, was addressing the council.
Mayor Guinn then fired back at the attorney. He said, “This has turned into the Bobi Frank show. This is no longer about your clients.”
Mayor Guinn went on to say that he was disappointed in the council, to which Frank replied, “I’m sure they are disappointed in you as well.”
Frank has stated that Graham interfered with the sexual harassment investigation when Chief Graham contacted the victims after having been served with the Grievance.
Frank stated that she just learned that a witness had also been contacted.
Frank says that Mayor Guinn is attempting to intimidate the witnesses and the victims by being present during briefings at the OPD, where the victims and witnesses will be present.
Mayor Guinn said, “So I am going to be [at the police department] at 7 a.m., 3 p.m., and 9 p.m. If you want to stop me, send someone over there to arrest me.”
Frank then took the last 15 seconds of the meeting and reminded the city council and the citizens of Ocala, that, they could issue a recall on Mayor Guinn.
Citizens who attended the meeting, Frank, and the NAACP are now asking for Mayor Guinn to remove himself from his position pending the outcome of the investigation against Chief Graham.
Outside of City Hall, several residents, who do not want to be identified, said that they do not feel as though they could support the mayor any longer.
“I am shocked at his actions and his demeanor. He is not the person he pretends to be,” said one woman.
If Mayor Guinn or Chief Graham continue to interfere with the victims or witnesses in anyway, they could possibly be charged with witness intimidation.
Ocala Post has also obtained several photos, which pertain to the sexual harassment during the Washington DC trip. Those photos will be made public soon.
We want to hear from you. How do you feel about the way Mayor Guinn acted during the meeting?