In a statement loaded with apologies to a city hall employee he's known for 14 years, his wife of 25 years Sandy, his cabinet members, the Moneypenny family and the citizens of Akron, Garry Moneypenny's political ambitions flamed out because of inappropriate touching of a female co-worker at City Hall who was congratulating him on his appointment as interim mayor during the transition following then-Mayor Don Plusquellic's resignation a month ago.
"I take full responsibility for my actions," Moneypenny said, adding he would not run for Mayor but would serve the remainder of the term he assumed only five days ago. "I turned a good-bye hug into a too personal encounter...I clearly violated a professional and personal boundary." In the Q&A following the statement, Moneypenny noted no charges or complaints had been filed.
"I regret violating the very same principles I've spent my entire career upholding," Moneypenny said, noting his career as a law enforcement officer included working with victim assistance programs.
Reporters pressed Moneypenny about whether it's okay to remain in office if it's not okay to run for a full term.
"I have been elected to this position by my peers on council and put into this position as our charter (provides)," said Moneypenny. I believe that I am still at this point the best to move forward with this city on an interim basis."
If it's okay to remain in the position for six month, then why not run for a full term?
"I've made a mistake here," said Moneypenny. "There are people who got out of this election race so I could run and this gives them plenty of time to go out and get their signatures at this point."
(City of Akron) In my last week in office as president of city council, I behaved inappropriately with a city employee, who came to my office to wish me well on my transition to mayor.
In the emotion of the moment, I turned a good-bye hug into a too-personal encounter. I have known this employee for over 14 years. We have always had a very professional relationship. And I clearly violated a professional and personal boundary.
Words cannot describe the remorse I feel for my actions.
I spent 37 years in law enforcement. I've spent years in service to Victim's Assistance. I regret violating the very same principles I've spent my career upholding.
I offered my unconditional apology to this employee. I apologized to my wonderful wife of 25 years. I apologized to my cabinet members. And now, I offer my apology to the citizens of Akron who trust me to serve as mayor.
I take full responsibility for my actions. I know this incident calls my character and my trustworthiness into question. For this reason, I have decided that I will not be a candidate for election to mayor and I will not appear on the ballot in September.
I will do my best to serve as the city's interim mayor and will pledge my support to the new administration when the new mayor is elected.