ELLISVILLE, Mo. (KMOX) – Adam Paul’s last act as Ellisville mayor was to prematurely leave his own impeachment hearing.
City Council members voted 5-to-1 late Monday to remove him from office. Councilwoman Linda Reel cast the lone ‘not guilty’ vote.
Earlier, defense attorney Chet Pleban capped his closing argument by calling the council a “lynch mob” and vowing to appeal his client’s case to a “real court.”
“This has been very, very embarrassing,” Pleban said, then proceeding to shame several council members.
“The decision’s been made,” Paul told reporters as he left St. John’s Lutheran Church, where the hearing was held. “I’ve had it. They’re the judge, executioner and jury.”
For about three hours, the council deliberated, point-by-point, their resolution of charges against Paul. They voted to drop and/or combine many of the allegations, including one under the heading of “conduct unbecoming and demeaning to the office.”
But they deadlocked on an attempt to drop their charge of inquiring with the police chief about getting a badge and a gun.
Paul was found guilty of talking around with various lawyers to figure out if City Attorney Paul Martin was overcharging the town, phoning a relocation expert to pose resident questions involving a Walmart development, bossing around the City Clerk when he felt a meeting’s minutes were inaccurate, instructing police to kick-out allegedly unruly people from council meetings, failing to competently preside and keep control over meetings, recording phone conversations – not because it was illegal but it was received as intimidating – and denying that he was himself to avoid a subpoena.
Councilman Matt Pirrello said the charge of conversing with the Walmart associate was most troubling to him, because, by charter, all contact with parties doing business with the city must take place in a public forum.
The decision, Pirrello said, was “pretty straightforward for me,” adding that “I would’ve loved to have heard from the Mayor but he chose not to testify.”
Paul predicts the current, lame-duck council will appoint an interim mayor before they’re out in an effort to pass further tax incentives for Walmart developer Sansone Group.
Pirrello said the newly elected council will likely pick the position once they’re seated on April 17.
With Paul vowing an appeal, the clock keeps ticking for all attorneys involved.
The now-former mayor opined on the price tag: “I asked for stationary, which is about a hundred bucks. This is going to cost well into a hundred thousand.”
Pirrello hit back: “There would’ve been not one dime spent, had the mayor comported himself within the confines of the charter.”
Both Mayor Paul and councilman Pirrello will sit face-to-face in the same studio on Tuesday afternoon during a broadcast of “The Mark Reardon Show” on NewsRadio 1120 KMOX and KMOX.com.