Mayor Resigns After Alleged Comments About Gay Officer - NBC4: Columbus, Ohio News, Weather, and Sports (WCMH-TV)

Mayor Resigns After Alleged Comments About Gay Officer

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Mary McAngus Mary McAngus
Kyle Calendine Kyle Calendine

The mayor of a small Ohio village is out of a job for allegedly not liking one of her police officers for being openly gay.

The Pomeroy Village Council accepted Mary McAngus' resignation at the council meeting Monday night.

The controversy began shortly after Officer Kyle Calendine was hired last fall, and McAngus found out that he is gay.

"She brought me into her office. She stated to me that, 'Did you know that officer Calendine was a queer?'" said Chief Mark Proffitt, of Pomeroy Police Department.

Proffitt said he told McAngus that someone's sexual orientation didn't matter, and that Calendine was a good officer.

"Due to circumstances, I'm resigning my position as mayor of Pomeroy," McAngus' resignation letter read.

The letter was read at the village council meeting, and the council had no objection to it.

Calendine said he was relieved.

"She never called me names to my face. It always seemed to be behind my back," Calendine said.

Proffitt said that the former mayor's opinions created a hostile work environment, and that she did not hold back her feelings about Calendine from complete strangers.

"During two interviews of potential officers, in the interview, she advised them that we have a queer officer working for us and one officer actually laid into her saying, 'Wait a minute, now. I have family member that's gay and I don't appreciate that language," Proffitt said.

The 21-year-old officer's family and partner stood by his side through all the stress.

"I told him, 'Don't back down. Never back down,'" said Harold Barnhart, Calendine's partner.

Members of an Athens-based equal rights group prepared to defend Calendine.

"We didn't have to come down here and bring the support because it was already here, and that's what's really important, and this is a lucky community," said Ginny Blakely, of Athens Ohio Area PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays).

McAngus declined to talk to NBC4 about her feelings, but Calendine expressed his feelings toward her.

"Why? Why would you have to be so mean? You hired me. You was fine with me in the interview. Now all of a sudden you find out I was gay and you tried to run me off," Calendine said.

He said that instead of running him off, he's more encouraged now to stay.

He's on probation for another month as a part-time officer, and said he then hopes to be hired on as a full-time employee.

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