Massachusetts mayor accused of threatening local official with gun over recall petition
A Massachusetts mayor facing a recall petition is accused of brandishing a gun at a city councilor and telling him to say he was bullied into signing it, the Boston Herald reported.
According to City Councilor Jasiel Carreia II, he was meeting with Mayor William Flanagan (pictured above) in Flanagan’s vehicle on Aug. 18 when Flanagan pulled the firearm out of the center console and told him, “I never leave home without this,” before threatening him.
“Obviously when he took out a gun, the whole thing escalated,” Carreia was quoted as saying. “This is the mayor. I don’t know what he’s capable of. He didn’t forewarn me he had a gun. I thought, ‘This is ridiculous. This is crazy.’ There’s no doubt in my mind there was intimidation being used. No doubt.”
Flanagan told the Herald that Carreia came to him saying he had signed the petition after being threatened, and alerted Carreia before taking the gun out of his waistband after Carreia expressed an interest in obtaining a license to carry his own firearm.
“I was taken aback by the comments by the city councilor,” he said. “They are unfounded and just not true.”
Another city councilor, Paul DaSilva, backed up Flanagan’s account, telling the Herald that he did not feel anyone was threatened, though he joined the conversation between Flanagan and Correia after it started.
Carreia has not pressed charges against Flanagan, but the Fall River Herald News reported that Flanagan was put “on notice” regarding the allegations by Police Chief Daniel S. Racine and told to avoid contact with Carreia.
“We have this kind of case often,” Racine was quoted as saying. “But it’s usually not involving city councilors and mayors.”
Racine also said he gave Carreia “options” should he want to file charges against Flanagan.
WPRI-TV reported last week that the recall drive against Flanagan was spurred by what critics call a series of increases in property taxes and other expenses, including a “pay as you throw” trash removal program that requires residents to use a specific brand of trash bag available locally. Local trash collectors have been instructed to only take those bags while making their rounds.
[Image via YouTube]
[h/t New York Daily News]