Controversy in Metro Council; 'Victims did lose their voice today'

Dan Johnson will remain on Metro Council

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- Embattled Metro Councilman Dan Johnson will keep his job as a councilman after the council court voted to dismiss the case brought against him.

The controversial decision came only hours into the hearing in which a charging committee set out to have him removed.

Johnson’s attorney, Thomas McAdam, proposed a motion to have the case dismissed.

The council court spent several hours in executive session reviewing the motion and drafting an agreement. After a short discussion, the council court voted on the agreement, with 13 council members in favor and six against.

The order allows Johnson to continue serving as the councilman for the 21st District, although he will be working mostly from home. He is only allowed at City Hall 20 minutes before and after a council meeting and is not allowed at any ceremonious events outside of district 21.

As part of the agreement, Johnson also admitted he is guilty of the allegations brought against him and will not run for re-election next year.

"This council has received an opinion from County Attorney Mike O’Connell's office that advises us even if we go through these proceedings and we go through the entire process and we spend hundreds of thousands of dollars in time to call witnesses, even if we do that, we've been advised that more like than not we will be stay and Councilman Johnson in essence never really will be removed from this council,” Metro Council President David Yates said.

Not all council members supported the agreement and some argued, if he is admitting he is guilty, they should not be allowing him to continue to serve.

Yates added, if Johnson does violate any of the agreed-on contract a triumvirate, which will be three council members, will vote on the issue and if majority agrees, he will be immediately removed from his position.

The five charging committee members were not part of the agreement and do not support it.

Councilwoman Jessica Green said, "You have silenced me, you have stripped me of my humanity and that is reprehensible."

"Victims did lose their voice today. They will not be heard. Their opportunity was taken away and reprehensible is just the beginning,” Councilwoman Angela Leet added.

At this point, the charging committee said their hands are tied. Johnson will continue to serve in his position, with the agreed-on stipulations, until the end of his term.

© 2017 WHAS-TV


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