SAN BERNARDINO (CBSLA) — San Bernardino Mayor John Valdivia was in the hot seat Wednesday night as multiple community members attended a city council meeting demanding his resignation.
“Do the city a favor, and please resign, John,” one woman said.
Valdivia is currently under investigation after two former employees accused him of sexually harassing them and threatening their employment.
“The city attorney, other high ranking city officials, have been putting him on notice of his behavior for at least two years,” Tristan Pelayes, the women’s attorney, said.
But, the attorney said, those warnings — some of them written — did not do any good.
Treasure Ortiz marched to the meeting with a group of San Bernardino residents outraged by the mayor’s alleged behavior, but she does not believe he will resign because, “he’s a narcissist and misogynistic and he’s proven it.”
Ortiz, a former city employee, said she has seen Validivia’s behavior firsthand.
“I’ve watched employees harassed, retaliated against,” she said.
According to Ortiz, city employees have been pressured to treat the council members like gods and that Valdivia called himself the “King of San Bernardino,” but when approached by news media Wednesday night, he walked away.
“We anticipate that there could be litigation,” Gary Saenz, city attorney, said.
Saenz advised the council not to speak about the allegations, though he himself took the city to court after the mayor substantially cut his and the city clerk’s pay — the court ruled in Saenz’s favor.
Valdivia did not comment on the allegations against him Wednesday, but in a previous statement he said the accusations were false and politically motivated.