The chair of the Albemarle Supervisors has elaborated on why she wants her embattled colleague from the Scottsville District to give up his seat. Ann Mallek acknowledges the four weeks since Chris Dumler (pictured) pleaded guilty to misdemeanor sexual battery have been rough for many people:
Mallek was a Wednesday guest on "Charlottesville...Right Now" with Coy Barefoot. Chris Dumler will be on the show today following CBS News at 5 p.m. Several Albemarle residents have offered recommendations about who might replace Dumler if he does leave the board. Randolph Byrd is a past chair of the 5th District Republicans:
The uproar during the supervisors' Monday night meeting has attracted the attention of The Mail Online, a worldwide publication that originates in the U.K. It included a photo of protester Jamie Morgan who scolded Dumler before she was escorted out of the meeting. Meanwhile, Dumler has released a statement saying he has no plans to run for his seat again, he's not giving up his seat now, and he apologizes to the victim in the misdemeanor sexual battery case.
I would like to take a few minutes to clear the air regarding the events that have happened in my personal life lately. Additionally, I feel I owe this to the people involved, my constituents who have placed their faith in me, and the County.
The incident in question that led to these legal difficulties began when I made a decision to become sexually involved with a woman I was social with in Scottsville. The legality or illegally of any of this notwithstanding, I acted inappropriately and I would like to make a formal apology to her. Obviously, my actions--as evidenced by her reaction--left her upset and distressed, and I certainly never meant for that to happen; I am sincerely sorry.
I have learned the hard way that I must be more considerate of the feelings of people who I have close interpersonal relationships with, and I am upset with myself, and very sorry to those whom I have been discourteous towards. Quite simply, my behavior was inappropriate, and it was wrong. I'm tremendously embarrassed and sorry that my girlfriend had to be involved in this terrible ordeal, and I'm enormously grateful for her understanding and her continued support.
Are you going to continue on the board?
Some of those speaking out are understandably confused, disappointed, and hurt that they supported me, trusted me, and voted for me because of the positions and ideals I said I would represent on the Board me in light of my lapse of judgment, and to you, I apologize.
On the other hand, many of the contacts that my Board and I have received are affiliated with interests that are ideologically opposed to the side of the current 3-3 split that I am on the BoS. Currently, the Board is in the middle of important budget negotiations, a comprehensive plan update that happens once every five years, and other critical issues, such as the creation of our stormwater management program to comply with federal mandates. I have been a moderate and an important voice on behalf of the residents of Southern Albemarle when it comes to these issues, and a change in the composition of the Board resulting from an unelected interim Supervisor replacing me would likely be the difference on a number of votes and issues affecting growth area expansion, rural area preservation, investment in education, and the funding of important capital improvement projects that help us maintain our quality of life here in Albemarle County.
I feel that it is my responsibility--my obligation--to honor the commitment that the majority of voters in my district asked of me and represent them on issues like holding the line on growth area expansions and maintaining our commitment and loyalty to our small public schools. The people of the Scottsville District should not be punished for my lapse in judgment. Therefore, I have no intention to resign my position. To the many, many constituents who have sent me e-mails of support, encouragement, and well-wishes in this difficult time, I thank you for having the faith in me to continue serving you. I know I have many fences to mend, and much trust to regain. I would also like to take this opportunity to apologize to my colleagues on the board. They have been tossed into the middle of an unfortunate and emotionally charged scene, and that is something I never wanted and I deeply regret that they were forced to get involved.
What are you going to do?
I know I have much work ahead of me. I alone am responsible for my behavior and accountable for my actions, and I continue to comply with all the terms of the agreement I entered in to with the Commonwealth, none of which were meant to or do disqualify me from serving my constituents. I continue to be remorseful for these events, for the hurt feelings that I caused, and for the chaos created that my fellow Board members have had to deal with. Nonetheless, I continue to feel that the only thing that I can do is represent the people who elected me and fulfill my oath of office. Nothing that has happened has altered how I have done my job, how I intend to do my job, or how I intend to vote on critical issues facing the district. And while some have asked for my resignation, many more have asked me to stay, to learn from my mistakes, and to be a better person and representative for the experience - therefore, based on the support I have received from the constituents in my district, I plan to uphold our country's democratic process and continue on the Board.