Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Ydanis Rodriguez's Side Of The Story »

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Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez -- or his lawyer, at least -- has found a way for him to put out his narrative of what happened in last month's "touching" incident. It's wrapped in a shroud of official City Council secrecy, but the Washington Heights Democrat is accused of improper physical contact (of the non-sexual variety) with a Council staffer after a heated budget argument.

Rodriguez has adamantly denied doing anything wrong, but since the Standards and Ethics Committee's meetings are closed, its questioning of Rodriguez, the staffer and witnesses has happened privately, leaving us all guessing.

So Rodriguez's lawyer Leo Glickman filed papers today seeking an injunction to hold the next meeting -- scheduled for Wednesday morning -- in public. You can read them below. They say Rodriguez is accused of poking the staffer between the throat and upper chest, after he asked her why two Puerto Rican and Dominican groups had $250,000 budget items yanked. They also say the committee has not interviewed other council members who witnessed the interaction.

"It's possible there was an unintended incidental contact he does not recall, but there was no intentional contact," Glickman said. "We want this to happen in an open and transparent way, and we want people to decide from themselves."

This is part of a newly-aggressive response from Rodriguez, including a community meeting last week to try to fire back against the charges.

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