The two women running on Bayonne mayoral challenger Jason O’Donnell’s slate, Sharma Montgomery and Melissa Enriquez-Rada, ripped Mayor Jimmy Davis over sexting allegations that have resulted in a lawsuit against the city.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“The text messages our Mayor sent to the woman who worked for him are appalling and far from what we would consider ‘playful banter’, as Mayor Davis put it. Initially, he denied sending them, then he was hacked and now he says it’s just playful banter between friends,” Montgomery and Enriquez-Rada said in a joint statement.
“Except, the woman wasn’t just a friend, she was his employee. This makes the ‘playful banter’ a huge liability for the Bayonne taxpayer. In 2018, a retired police captain and current mayor of a large city should have better judgment and care more about how his poor decisions might affect the taxpayers.”
Their remarks come after veteran political columnist Augie Torres touched on former City Hall employee Stacie Percella’s lawsuit in his weekly column.
She filed her court claim in January, which alleges the mayor offered to help Percella settle an old lawsuit with the previous administration for $150,000 in exchange for a sexual relationship.
Davis and his camp have previously written off the lawsuit as “somebody whose looking to make money off the taxpayers.”
Despite that stance, Montgomery and Enriquez-Rada expressed disappointment that Bayonne taxpayers may now be on the hook for a lucrative settlement.
“This matter is not just about lewd and embarrassing behavior, this is about Jimmy Davis using our taxpayer money to fund his defense against poor judgment in his personal life. Like Mr. Torres said yesterday, ‘if the evidence provided stands in litigation, then that piggy bank looks more like it will be a Fort Knox settlement, courtesy of the Peninsula City taxpayers’. And, if that happens, we will all pay for Mayor Davis’ disgusting actions.”
Council President Sharon Nadrowski, who, along with the rest of the council, is seeking re-election on Davis’ ticket, responded that O’Donnell’s camp only continues bringing this up since they can’t gain any traction with city-based issues.
“Apparently Jason O’Donnell has decided to try and make this the dirtiest campaign in Bayonne’s history. O’Donnell has been peddling these negative, personal attacks on Mayor Davis for months, even though he’s simultaneously lying to residents by claiming that he’s not running a negative campaign,” she said in a statement.
“O’Donnell knows that Mayor Davis is the third public official that Ms. Percella has filed a harassment lawsuit against, and it’s clear his campaign is colluding with Ms. Percella. This sort of dirty trick campaign based on lies and misdirection will continue to backfire on him. Bayonne residents are happy with the progress the city is experiencing under Team Davis.”
O’Donnell has previously denied having any involvement with Percella and/or her case, though Davis himself has said he believes the opposite to be true.