Ninth woman accuses Bob Filner of sexual harassment

A woman who works as a Marilyn Monroe lookalike made new allegations against the San Diego mayor

Published August 2, 2013 1:54PM (EDT)

A ninth woman has come forward and made sexual harassment allegations against San Diego Mayor Bob Filner, saying that she met Filner at a fundraiser after she was hired to sing as a Marilyn Monroe lookalike. “He grabbed me a little too tight, then proceeded to slide his hand down my arm and then did a little grab on my derriere,” Emily Gilbert told Fox 5 San Diego. “I didn’t want to make a scene there were kids around.”

Eight other women have accused Filner of sexual harassment, including his former communications director Irene McCormack Jackson, who has also filed a lawsuit against him.

Earlier this week, the San Diego City Council unanimously voted against a request by Filner's attorney Harvey Berger for the city to cover his legal fees. Berger argued that the city never provided sexual harassment training to Filner, so “The city may be strictly liable for any sexual harassment by a supervisor, even if it had no reason to know of it. So, of course, the city should have a strong interest in making certain that Mayor Filner has the resources to defend himself.” The City Council disagreed, and then sued Filner as well.

Meanwhile, two different groups are pushing to recall Filner, but until now the city's murky recall law has presented a number of obstacles for the efforts. But this week the City Attorney issued an opinion that mostly paved the way for a recall. From the San Diego Union-Tribune:

One of the obstacles in the way of the nascent recall movements had been the murkiness of the city law that dictates the rules for how to oust an elected official. The City Attorney’s Office issued an opinion that the law allows simultaneous attempts to recall an official until one of them qualifies for the ballot.

In addition, the opinion stated that a six-month prohibition on subsequent recall efforts is only triggered by a public vote on the subject, not simply launching the process.

By Jillian Rayfield

Jillian Rayfield is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on politics. Follow her on Twitter at @jillrayfield or email her at

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Bob Filner California Recall San Diego Sexual Harassment