Wilmer council member files disorderly conduct charges on mayor’s husband
By 11/21/2002 00:00:00
JOEY DAUBEN The Ellis County Press WILMER - City Council Member Tiny Lange has filed charges against Mayor Linda Root's husband, Jim, for comments he made at a Nov. 7 meeting. According to a police report Lange filed, Jim Root referred to her as a 'stupid b----' after a motion to hire the city's former building inspector was made. The mayor said her husband, according to the tapes and last week's report in The Ellis County Press, actually referred to Lange as a 'stupid woman.' The mayor said she has not only the city council meeting minutes taped, but videotape of the meeting as well. 'We have it on tape,' Root said. 'It's one thing to lie on a report or turn the truth to make [something] look good. But it's another thing to lie…an outright lie. I have a problem with that.' 'I have witnesses saying it was ‘b----,'' Lange said. 'I don't have to take that from nobody.' The videotape, according to Lange, can not be used for evidence because duplicates were made; she said the detective working the case said it broke the evidence rule. However, city council meeting tapes are taped by the city secretary and those could be used. 'He's the husband of an elected official,' Lange said. 'He should conduct himself a lot better.' 'It bothers me because she singled him out,' said Mayor Root, speaking on behalf of her husband. 'Everyone was [going] nuts [over the motion]. Why didn't she file charges against the others? This is ludicrous ... but welcome to Wilmer.' Lange said former city council candidate Chris Blalock also referred to her as a 'b----,' but won't file charges on her because 'she didn't say it loud enough to be on the tape. Lange said she didn't file the charge, a Class 'C' misdemeanor, because Jim was the mayor's husband. She would have filed charges on anyone, she said. In fact, this isn't the first time Lange has filed on someone using improper language. Wilmer resident Linda Alexander was fined, according to Lange, for referring to her as a 'm-----f-----' while Lange and other residents delivered Christmas gifts. A court date has been set for Dec. 3 for both sides to present their case. Root said her husband will plead not guilty and will wait for the judge's final decision. She's confident the tape will prove his innocence. 'She's targeting him because she knows who he is,' Root said. 'I'm sorry, but that's just how I feel. It's a quagmire…just a mess.' The charge for cursing a public official is classified as disorderly conduct in a public meeting. Root said council members are publicly elected officials who must make decisions in the best interest of the citizens. Some decisions might not sit well with all people, but it's the nature of the job. 'If you can't stand the heat,' she said, 'get out of the fire.'