SAN DIEGO (AP) — When he was mayor of San Diego, Bob Filner waited to be alone with women to kiss, grope and manhandle them without any witnesses, according to a probation officer's report released after he was sentenced Monday to home confinement.
Filner, 71, apologized and told the judge he would try to earn the trust of those he betrayed and recover his integrity — a sharp contrast to his defiant resignation speech nearly four months ago in which he said he was the victim of "a lynch mob."
His attorney Jerry Coughlan said Filner dropped mood-altering medications when he became mayor. That, combined with the stress of leading the nation's eighth-largest city, substantially contributed to Filner's behavior, Coughlan wrote to the judge.
Superior Court Judge Robert Trentacosta sentenced Filner to three months of home confinement and three years of probation — the same punishment that prosecutors had recommended in a plea agreement reached in October.
"I want to apologize to my family, who have stood by me through this ordeal, to my loyal staff and supporters, the citizens of San Diego and most sincerely to the women I have hurt and offended," Filner told the judge in a brief statement. "Certainly the behaviors before this court today will never be repeated."
Filner had faced a maximum possible penalty of three years in prison for a felony count of false imprisonment and one year in jail for each of two misdemeanor counts of battery.
The former 10-term congressman cannot seek or hold elected office while on probation and will be monitored by GPS during home confinement, which begins Jan. 1.
The three victims in the complaint, who were not named, declined to attend the sentencing and didn't seek restitution, according to the probation report. One said she wished Filner would be sentenced to three months in jail and would leave San Diego, while the others had no opinion on an appropriate punishment.
Nearly 20 women have publicly identified themselves as targets of Filner's unwanted advances, including kissing, groping and requests for dates. His accusers include a retired Navy rear admiral, a San Diego State University dean and a great-grandmother who volunteers her time to answer the questions of senior citizens at City Hall.
Filner, who is twice divorced, pleaded guilty to the felony for what the probation report described as putting a woman in a headlock after a dinner party on March 6 and attempting to kiss her on the lips. The woman, identified as a longtime Filner acquaintance, told authorities that he kissed her eye and she elbowed him to get free.