Bombarded by allegations of sexual harassment by at least 17 women, Bob Filner underwent counseling and ultimately resigned from his post as San Diego mayor earlier this year.
The saga continued Tuesday when the San Diego Superior Court handed down three charges, including one felony false imprisonment charge, related to his encounter with three of his accusers.
Very few details were immediately released following the court’s decision, which identified each of the victims as Jane Doe. In addition to the felony count, Filner also faces two misdemeanor battery charges.
Relating to the more serious charge, the court concluded that Filner held at least one victim prisoner “by violence, fraud, menace and deceit.”
Though the developing case has not yet yielded any specifics, many of the former mayor’s alleged victims have been candid about the level of abuse they say he inflicted on them.
According to his first accuser and former staffer Irene Jackson, Filner forced her to kiss him, requested she work without underwear, and physically restrained her as he whispered in her ear. Jackson’s allegations paved the way for several more allegations and legal action against both the defendant and the City of San Diego.
Also sporting a black eye from the scandal, the city is on the hook to defend Filner against civil charges that stemmed from his actions as mayor and pay for any settlements reached against him. San Diego City Attorney Jan Goldsmith indicated that the disgraced politician is on his own against criminal charges.
Even until the day he resigned, Filner refused to accept responsibility for his actions, predicting that he would be vindicated in court. He was even brazen enough to guarantee generous raises for his most faithful staff members as he walked out of the door and back into private life.
San Diego, which represents a rare oasis of sanity in an otherwise hopelessly blue state, chose Filner as its first Democrat mayor in two decades. Given the damage he has done to that city’s reputation during just nine months in office, one hopes voters won’t make the same mistake any time soon.
–Western Journalism staff writer
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