San Diego Mayor Hit With Sexual Harassment Suit

FILE - This Nov. 7, 2012 file photo shows San Diego Mayor Bob Filner smiling during a news conference at a park in San Diego. A prominent onetime supporter of Mayor Filner is calling for him to resign after less than a year in office amid allegations that he sexually harassed women. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)
Bob Filner. Photo: Greg Bull

In an odd sequence of events, San Diego Mayor Bob Filner apologized for sexually harassing women, declared he needs help, and refused to resign before we heard a clear explanation of what he was accused of doing. That changed on Monday when Filner’s former communications director filed a lawsuit accusing him of sexual harassment. Irene McCormack Jackson says she was “placed in the Filner Headlock and moved around like a rag doll, while he whispered sexual comments in my ear.” She also claims the mayor asked for a kiss, suggested she remove her underwear, and groped other women in the office. “Women were viewed by Mayor Filner as sexual objects or stupid idiots,” she said. “He is not fit to be mayor of our great city. He is not fit to hold any public office.”

On Monday afternoon, Filner responded, “I humbly ask that through this vicious storm of controversy people take a moment and temper their rush to judgment. I do not believe these claims are valid. That is why due process is so important.” However, it doesn’t look like this is something that will blow over with time. The San Diego Sheriff’s Department has launched a hotline for people to report sexual harassment allegations against Filner, and if he needs anymore proof that this is now a bona fide sex scandal, Jackson is being represented by Gloria Allred.