February 6, 2013
Albemarle County supervisor Chris Dumler was met with calls for his resignation at his first board meeting since pleading guilty to sexual battery last week, but Dumler says he's still "fully committed to the job."
After an emotionally-charged proposal by Duane Snow, supervisors voted 3 to 2 to support a resolution asking Dumler to step down from office.
"It is wrong to have a convicted sexual molester of women sitting on this board. It sends the wrong message to the youth and law-abiding citizens of this county. I strongly believe it is a slap in the face to the victims who've had the courage to come forward," Snow told the board. "Mr. Dumler's continued presence on this board of supervisors will be a constant reminder to our wives, mothers, daughters and to ourselves of the sexual abuse that was inflicted upon these women."
Rodney Thomas and Ken Boyd sided with Snow's resolution. Ann Mallek and Dennis Rooker opposed.
Mallek and Rooker said they did not support asking Dumler to remove himself from the board because they said that's a decision for voters in the Scottsville district.
Dumler abstained from voting on the resolution but says he wants to keep his seat because there is still more work to be done.
"I hope that we can put politics behind us," Dumler told the Newsplex. "I gave a public apology as part of my guilty plea and it's my hope that we can move forward and actually get back to the business of the people."
But former members of the board say that won't be easy. Peter Way and Forrest Marshall, who spent a combined 18 years as supervisors themselves, are also asking Dumler to step down. They say Dumler's reputation is too damaged to represent the people of his district.
"He's a young man. He has so much going for him. He could have been a wonderful, wonderful example for our young people, but that's destroyed now," said Way.
Marshall added, "If he's smart, he'll go ahead and resign now and let us get somebody down there that's willing to represent the county."
A second motion to censure Dumler was received with unanimous support among supervisors.
Ann Mallek made that proposal saying, "Mr. Dumler has admitted guilt and has plead guilty to a serious crime that no one on this board condones." She went on to say, "The purpose of the censure is to affirm, on the record, our disapproval of his behavior and to admonish him for the discredit that his actions have brought to this board."
Dumler abstained from voting but called it "an appropriate vote of disapproval."