Lumpkin Councilor refuses to step down after racial slur allegat - WRBL

Lumpkin Councilor refuses to step down after racial slur allegations

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NAACP letter to Deborah Stone NAACP letter to Deborah Stone

Lumpkin City Councilwoman Deborah Stone has refused to accept a letter from the NAACP asking for her resignation after allegations that she used a racial slur in reference to the mayor.

City officials say the controversy began when Lumpkin's new fire chief, Steve Jordan, met Stone for the first time. He reported to the police chief that Stone called the city's first black mayor, Charles Gibson, the "N-word," during their initial conversation.

When police chaplain and local NAACP president, Rev. Alfonza Seldon heard about it, he got together with his organization to draft a letter to stone.

"In that letter," says Seldon, "it would formally ask for her resignation, and a formal apology to the citizens of Lumpkin as well as the mayor. We delivered that on Monday."

The next day the letter was returned, and the sealed envelope read "Will Not Accept."

 Mayor Gibson says people who use racial slurs should not be allowed to represent the city of Lumpkin. "
We can't move forward with someone with those views," he says. "It is just not going to happen. It's kind of like having a vehicle, and you're trying to get from point A to point B, and you have a major issue with the vehicle. Until you fix the issue, you can't get from point A to point B."

As an elected official, Stone answers to the people when it comes to hiring and firing, but Seldon says they are disappointed she will not acknowledge the NAACP's request for her resignation. He says, "What we are really hoping happens is that enough people will unite here in this city and say 'we do not want this from our leaders. We do not want this in our city, no way, shape, form or fashion.'"

Mayor Gibson adds, "If I had the power to remove her, then I would. She would already be gone, but I do not. That power is left over to the people. The NAACP is asking her nicely, and I would think that if she respected the citizens in the city then she would remove herself."

Police Chief Javier Garcia also tells News 3 he is filing a formal ethical complaint against stone with the Equal Employment Opportunity Committee.

Stone was not at home when we tried to reach her, but her neighbor says she is not the type of person to use racial slurs.

Gibson has served as Lumpkin's mayor since 2011. Stone is in her second stint as a council member.

Jessi Mitchell

Jessi joined the WRBL news team in October 2012 after working as a freelance production assistant for MTV Networks in Los Angeles.

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