Hundreds attend hearing for Villa Hills Mayor investigation

VILLA HILLS, KY (FOX19) - A few hundred people attended a hearing for the results of an independent investigation into activities conducted by Villa Hills Mayor Mike Martin while in office. The investigation was conducted by Phil Taliferro of the Northern Kentucky law firm of Taliferro, Carran and Keyes.

Some of the accusations include destruction of city property when Martin, in an effort to see what was inside of a city safe, ordered a public works employee to use a backhoe to open the safe and then used the backhoe to destroy it afterwards.

Martin is currently in a lawsuit filed by Assistant Police Chief Joe Shutzman and Taliferro's investigation accuses Martin of having a city employee dig a hole and then burn documents that were mailed to the city from the United States Department of Commerce, which were intended for Shutzman.

The mayor, who was inducted into office in January 2011, is also accused of misuse of city facilities, improper administration of the civil service ordinance, bidding and purchasing concerns and alleged retaliatory behavior and comments.

In addition, the investigation also accuses Martin, who is a plumber and electrician, of working both in Villa Hills and in other areas of Northern Kentucky without being licensed by the state. Taliferro says Martin has never been licensed as either and that is a violation of Kentucky law with a penalty of up to six months in jail, if convicted.

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