Valley Park Retains Special Counsel to Investigate “Mayor Gone Wild”
VALLEY PARK (KMOX) – Mayor Nathan Grellner, yet again, declined to show his face at a board meeting, this time following last week’s reports he had been treated for methamphetamine use.
“I don’t see true repentance from him until he steps down from office,” was the call from an angry resident.
Another urged for mercy: “I don’t know if you believe in the power of prayer, but that’s what this man needs right now.”
But because Grellner has doggedly clung to power, aldermen decided last night to hire special counsel to investigate the Mayor and City Attorney Eric Martin. The evidence compiled will likely be used to justify impeachment proceedings.
Attorney Chet Pleban promised to have his report done by the August 6th board meeting.
“We have to get to the facts. We can’t go on assumptions,” board president Mike Pennise told KMOX in reaction to the calls for impeachment.
Martin was also temporarily removed from his position by aldermen, which prompted some verbal sparring behind the dias and eventually resulted in Martin storming to the back of the room. Some are wary of his role as a personal friend to Grellner and also of the potential for conflict of interest as the Mayor is investigated.
When Grellner used the city’s credit card to purchase thousands of dollars worth of goods, including a new washer and dryer, it was Martin who reportedly discovered the items at the Mayor’s house and advised him to return them. Aldermen have expressed displeasure at how long it took this action to come to their attention.
City Clark Marguerite Wilburn was also a target of criticism Monday night. She is accused of stonewalling the release of information.
The city’s inquiry is unrelated to a criminal investigation begun by St. Louis County police.
In addition to the drug allegations, Grellner was arrested in June on suspicion of driving while intoxicated. The Brynes Mill police officer involved in the encounter accused Grellner on spitting on him.
Grellner also skipped six months of city council meetings. On one of those nights, as KMOX News previously reported, Grellner had swiped the city’s credit card at the Penthouse Club in Sauget, Illinois. The night of another council meeting, Grellner used the card at a bar close to City Hall called Meramec Jack’s. Other charges included ice cream cones and lunches.
Residents would like some resolution.
“I just watch each day and wait to see what’s gonna happen on the next episode of ‘Mayors Gone Wild,'” Pat Fox said.
Previous KMOX Coverage:
More Problems For the Mayor of Valley Park
Criminal Investigation Into Valley Park Mayor’s Use of City Credit Card
Valley Park Mayor Returns To Work, As Pressures Mount
Valley Park Mayor, Reportedly Arrested Tuesday, Suffering From Exhaustion
KMOX reporter Allison Blood contributed to this story.