Council Chairman Will Seek Input Concerning Gilespie Misdemeanor Conviction

by Tony Rutherford HuntingtonNews.Net Reporter
Council Chairman Will Seek Input Concerning Gilespie Misdemeanor Conviction

 A Huntington councilman has been convicted on two domestic charges and sentenced to six months home confinement. District 2 representative Pete L. Gillespie was found guilty of one count of domestic battery and one count of violating a domestic violence petition.

The incident stems from February. The couple is in the process of divorce.

Gillespie maintains that his wife tried to take his vehicle and he prevented her without touching her.

He has previously stated that he will not resign from his council seat.

Charter rules point to a crime of moral turpitude, but its definition varies as does its application.  The statement can apply to immigration law and to certain professional licenses and jobs. Some jurisdictions have held that a six months or less sentence would not invoke the claim.

Council Chairman Mark Bates told HNN in a brief interview that “if [Gillespie’s conviction] is called into question by another council member, an executive session will happen. If someone from the public wants to comment they are welcome to do so during Good and Welfare.”

Bates referred to a third option --- if his constituency wants him recalled.

“That is an entirely different process,” Bates said without being specific,  calling the circumstances  "uncharted territory. I do not think a council member has been removed by a Council vote or recall under the current charter."

Having received several calls of concern from residents from District Two , Bates said he will "request that the City Attorney advise us of the processes" available.

"All I can say is we will see where this goes together," Bates said.

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