San Diego Mayor Bob Filner Apologizes for Behavior

"I have failed to fully respect the women who work for me and with me, and that at times I have intimidated them," the mayor admitted in a statement

By Paul Krueger, R. Stickney and Sarah Grieco
|  Friday, Jul 12, 2013  |  Updated 11:18 AM EDT
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Mayor Bob Filner's prepared video statement released Thursday, the same day three high-profile allies accused him of sexually harassing female employees.

Mayor Bob Filner's prepared video statement released Thursday, the same day three high-profile allies accused him of sexually harassing female employees.

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San Diego Mayor Bob Filner released a statement on Thursday afternoon apologizing to city residents, hours after he was accused of sexually harassing numerous female employees.

"I begin today by apologizing to you. I have diminished the office to which you elected me. I have reached into my heart and soul and realize I must and will change my behavior," he said in the DVD.

Read Mayor's Full Statement Here

Earlier Thursday, three high-profile San Diegans described sexual harassment allegations involving “numerous” female employees of Mayor Bob Filner who were subjected to “unfortunate and reprehensible circumstances” but refused to reveal victim identities or details of the alleged behavior.

Special Section: Mayor Under Fire

Filner continued, "As someone who has spent a lifetime fighting for equality for all people, I am embarrassed to admit that I have failed to fully respect the women who work for me and with me, and that at times I have intimidated them.

"I am also humbled to admit that I need help. I have begun to work with professionals to make changes in my behavior and approach. In addition, my staff and I will participate in sexual harassment training provided by the city.

"Please know that I fully understand that only I am the one who can make these changes. If my behavior doesn't change I cannot succeed in leading our city.

"In the next few days, I will be reaching out to those who now work to those who now work in the Mayor's Office or have previously worked for me - both men and women - to personally apologize for my behavior."

Filner then said that residents have every right to be disappointed in him.

"I only ask that you give me an opportunity to prove I am capable of change, so that the vision I have for our city’s future can be realized," he said.

The attorney representing the women who claim Filner sexually harrassed them said he will not comment until Friday, saying he wants to speak with clients first and find out if they are satisfied with this apology.

 

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