Thursday, November 29, 2007

UA employee to Bob Filner: Take your apology and shove it!

Remember Big Bad Bob Filner, who has a penchant for using his status as a Democratic Congressment to shove people around?

On Monday Filner weasled his way out of any serious legal trouble by using the Alford Plea and was ordered to write the United Airlines employee he assaulted intimidated an apology.

So how contrite was Filner in his apology? Not very:

WASHINGTON – An airport baggage employee who claims Rep. Bob Filner assaulted her after growing irate about his delayed luggage says the court-ordered apology she received from the congressman is “pathetic,” that she is considering civil action and that the courts may have been lenient because of Filner's status as a lawmaker.

Joanne Kay Kunkel, the 35-year-old United Airlines customer service representative who filed an assault charge against the San Diego Democrat, said the stress and anxiety caused by the encounter have rendered her unable to work at the job she has held for more than eight years.

She claimed Filner screamed and pushed past her into an employees-only area in search of his bags Aug. 19 at Dulles International Airport in Virginia.

In the plea, similar to a no-contest plea, Filner did not admit guilt, but acknowledged that sufficient evidence exists for a conviction. He was fined $100 and ordered to write Kunkel an apology, which Kunkel received in the mail.

Filner's apology? A soul-searching three sentences:

Filner wrote that he is “sorry for raising my voice and behaving discourteously toward you and your colleagues,” Kunkel said, reading the letter in a telephone interview.

“ 'I was frustrated after a long day of traveling,' ” Filner wrote, she said. “ 'I overreacted and should not have done so. Please accept my most sincere apologies.' ”

Filner has said he acted out of frustration because his flight and baggage were delayed and no airline workers would tell him why. He insists nothing violent occurred.

Based on Filner's history, does anyone believe this?:

“I want to make clear that I did not strike, push or shove anyone,” he said in a statement after the court hearing. “Nor did I seek any sort of special treatment because I was a congressman.”

He said he didn't tell the United personnel “where I worked or what I did for a living.”

Of course it's possible that Kunkel is just looking to get paid:

But Kunkel insisted yesterday that Filner shoved her twice near the shoulders – hard enough to cause a person to stumble backward. She also said she believes that a man of less standing would have been forced to face her in court.

“Representative Filner got his day in court, and I got nothing,” said Kunkel, who said she has encountered many upset travelers, but never one as “scary” or “hostile” as Filner.

No comments: