Breaking News: Gail Riecken Statement on Mayor Winnecke’s handling of Schriber Scandal at Press…

first_imgThis is not a political issue. It’s about credibility. The mayor has displayed a lack of transparency throughout his term – from a closed-door homestead tax meeting, playing a shell game with our finances, withholding hotel details, and now withholding from the public knowledge about a city council election. This election needs to be about the truth.I called this press conference to assure you as Mayor that I will be open, honest and transparent. Action must be taken in order to prevent future abuses. I have been a long time advocate of children and their right to a happy, healthy childhood. I recently received the “2015 Friend of Children” award from the Indiana Association of Resources and Child Advocacy and I serve on the Commission for the Improvement of the Status of Children. I spoke to Superintendent Glenda Ritz earlier today, to ensure training is available for the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation. The training is called “Adults Protecting Children.” I will re-establish the Education Round Table to ensure that our children come before our politics. We have great schools and great teachers but the Mayors office always has responsibility to protect our children. As Mayor I will continue to advocate for the safety of our children.Gail Riecken is running for Mayor of Evansville and is a former Evansville City Council-woman, Evansville Parks Director, and a current member of the Indiana State House of Representatives. She is a lifelong Evansville resident, has been married for 47 years, and has 2 children and 3 grandchildren. I have been asked to make a statement regarding Mayor Winnecke’s handling of Mr. Schriber’s recent admission to sexual misconduct with a 15 year old male student. I first will comment on the Mayor’s handling of this situation, and then talk about how we move forward to protect children in the future. While the timing of the leak to the press brings out the worst in politics, it also brings to light my concerns that the Mayor has not been transparent or truthful with the people of Evansville.The Mayor said he was notified of the investigation as early as July. If it were left to the Mayor, the acknowledged molestation involving Mr. Schriber and the student would have never surfaced and Mr. Schriber could have been a city councilman. The Mayor was informed of the allegations before this past Sunday and Mayor Winnecke did nothing. Only when the story broke in the media did Lloyd Winnecke choose to say anything.More questions should be asked of the mayor. His calculated answers that tip toe around the issue should not be allowed to stand.• While the Mayor acknowledges that he was informed about the investigation, does the Mayor expect us to believe that he was not informed about Mr. Schriber’s admission?o Even Tim Ethridge in the Courier and Press (October 24) stated: “It’s difficult to fathom that police officials who are the mayor’s direct reports did not give him all the information, considering all the intertwined relationships.”o During his 2011 campaign the mayor wrote in his position paper on Public Safety, the Police chief will report directly to the Mayor’s office, creating an open, unfiltered flow of information. This direct communication will include frequent briefings…• Winnecke said he remained silent to let the police do their job, but nothing was done in the investigation after August 7th and Mayor Winnecke remained silent. Mayor Winnecke remained silent until the Courier and Press broke the story after voting had already begun. Why didn’t the mayor publicly or privately ask Mr. Schriber to suspend his campaign when he learned of his misconduct?The mayor owes us an explanation as to why he and his campaign continued to have a relationship with Schriber after the Mayor acknowledges he had been informed of the investigation.After Schriber confessed to the sexual misconduct with a student, there was continued support and collaboration between him and the Mayor’s campaign until the Courier and Press broke this story on October 20th. FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more