City Council to honor alleged Filner assault victim
SAN DIEGO (CNS) – The City Council Monday is scheduled to honor a female
employee who alleged sexual harassment by former Mayor Bob Filner.
A claim filed by Peggy Shannon, a great-grandmother who worked at the
Senior Services desk in the lobby of City Hall when Filner was mayor, was
resolved last week.
Shannon will receive an apology from the city at today's meeting. Also,
today will be proclaimed “Peggy Shannon Day” in San Diego.
“All of the parties agreed with Ms. Shannon that this was the way to
resolve her claim,” said City Attorney Jan Goldsmith. “Receiving an apology
is important to Peggy Shannon, and honoring her allows us to express our
respect for her and her courage.”
Goldsmith said state law holds the city as an employer strictly liable
for sexual harassment conduct of a supervisor, including the mayor, directed at
a city employee.
Shannon alleged that Filner repeatedly asked her out and one time
grabbed her and kissed her on the lips. She also contended that he walked by
her after the first sexual harassment allegations were lodged and put his
finger to his lips.
Her lawyer, Los Angeles-based civil rights attorney Gloria Allred, is
expected to accompany Shannon to the City Council meeting.
On Feb. 10, the City Council approved a $250,000 outlay to settle a
sexual harassment lawsuit filed by his former communications director, Irene
McCormack Jackson. It was negotiations over her litigation that led Filner to
step down on Aug. 30.
McCormack Jackson, also represented by Allred, alleged the then-mayor
told her she should work without her panties on, that he wanted to see her
naked and that he was eager to “consummate” their relationship.
She also contended that Filner demanded kisses and put his arm around
her and dragged her along in a headlock while making sexual remarks.
Filner pleaded guilty to one felony count of false imprisonment and
two misdemeanor counts of battery and was sentenced in December to three years
probation, including three months of home confinement.
Two other lawsuits regarding Filner are pending.
Stacy McKenzie, a city employee like McCormack Jackson, contends the ex-
mayor grabbed her from behind, put her in a headlock and rubbed her breasts at
an event at a city park.
Michelle Tyler was seeking help for a friend, a Marine veteran, when she
says Filner demanded a personal and sexual relationship.