The proper way to deal with rooting ratbag mayors

In Toronto the council stripped Rob Ford of his powers and budget. In Auckland Len Brown sails on regardless.

In San Diego, their rooting ratbag mayor is under house arrest for his ratbag behaviour.

Bob Filner, the former mayor of San Diego, was sentenced on Monday to three months of house arrest and three years of probation for harassing women during his abbreviated term.

In office for less than nine months, Mr. Filner, 71, was accused of sexually harassing more than a dozen women.

He resigned as mayor in August, amid growing public pressure and mounting legal problems. In October, he pleaded guilty to multiple charges of false imprisonment and battery stemming from accusations by three women who said they were groped or kissed at fund-raisers and public events.  

A San Diego County Superior Court judge prohibited Mr. Filner, a former 10-term congressman, from seeking or holding public office while he is on probation. As part of the plea deal, he will be monitored by a GPS device during his house arrest, beginning Jan. 1, and will pay fines totaling about $1,500.

At the sentencing, Mr. Filner offered an apology. “I want to apologize to my family who have stood by me through this ordeal, to my loyal staff and supporters, the citizens of San Diego and most sincerely to the women I have hurt and offended,” he said.

As part of the plea deal, announced in October, Mr. Filner pleaded guilty to a charge of felony false imprisonment for restraining a woman against her will at a fund-raiser on March 6. He also pleaded guilty to two misdemeanors: for kissing a woman on the lips against her will at an event in April, and for grabbing a woman’s buttocks after she asked for a photograph with him at an event in May.

The three victims were not publicly identified and did not appear at the sentencing. Mr. Filner was forbidden by the judge from having any contact with them.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.

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