Stillwater’s mayor denies allegations

BY RANDY ELLIS Modified: December 4, 2009 at 4:44 am •  Published: December 4, 2009
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STILLWATER — An anonymous group calling itself Concerned Citizens of Stillwater has initiated procedures to recall Stillwater Mayor Nathan Bates on allegations ranging from corruption in office to public intoxication.

"It’s a big shock to me,” said Bates, 27, who denied doing anything improper that would warrant recall.

The concerned citizens group listed four justifications for recalling Bates:

→ Corruption in office by asking a young woman to expose her breasts while he was riding with her on a boat at Lake Carl Blackwell.

→Corruption in office by repeatedly using his public office as a source for personal benefit and financial gain, through the solicitation of employment, free goods and services, and free transportation and event tickets for himself from the city, Oklahoma State University, the chamber of commerce, hospital, local retail businesses, restaurants, and entertainment establishments.

→Willful failure to perform charter-mandated duties by repeatedly interfering with or trying to direct the activities of on-duty police officers and civilian city employees.

→Being in a state of intoxication at various public places within the city.

Bates said the first allegation apparently was based on a May incident at Lake Carl Blackwell where a man falsely accused him of asking his girlfriend to expose her breasts and demanded an apology.

Oklahoma State University police filed a report and said Bates denied asking the woman to expose her breasts. Bates repeated that denial Thursday.

Bates also denies soliciting freebies.

The allegation of interfering with on-duty police officers is apparently based on police memos concerning an Oct.