McKINNEY, Texas - A McKinney City Council member is claiming he is the victim of discrimination again as the council considers amending the charter to make it easier to facilitate a recall election.
Things got heated during the council meeting Tuesday night when McKinney Councilmember La’Shadion Shemwell threw out the racism accusations.
Shemwell was recently arrested for domestic violence. It happened after he claimed earlier this year that he was racially profiled when pulled over for speeding. He was arrested then for refusing to sign two citations.
Tuesday’s council meeting opened with McKinney Mayor George Fuller rebuking Shemwell for a statement he says Shemwell made blaming law enforcement, the criminal justice system and racial inequality for his recent arrest.
“It’s, in my opinion, a reckless diversion from accountability,” the mayor said. “It is not law enforcement or the judicial system that has levied the allegations against Mr. Shemwell. It is, in fact, the mother of his children, an African American woman who resides in the same neighborhood as Mr. Shemwell, that has alleged the domestic violence.”
Shemwell was arrested December 6 on a felony domestic violence charge. The arrest affidavit details a series of alleged assault on Precious Jackson, a woman he’s dated and had children with.
According to one affidavit, Shemwell is accused of “forcefully taking her car key from her hand.” It says “he broke 3 of her fingernails, causing it to bleed.”
Another arrest report says Shemwell and Jackson were “arguing over text messages she was receiving from another male, struggling over her cell phone. That’s when Shemwell “threw Precious into a kitchen wall, causing her right eye to swell, and struck her in the mouth one time.”
In another arrest report, Shemwell allegedly “backhanded Precious in the mouth, causing her lip to bleed.”
On his Facebook page, Shemwell blamed “bully tactics” and vowed not to leave the council unless he’s defeated in an election.
During Tuesday’s public hearing to review the city charter and recall election procedures, the mayor and Shemwell clashed repeatedly.
“If we’re changing the rules, we can change the rules,” Shemwell said. “We might as well make it ‘white’s only.”
Shemwell claimed he was warned before he was elected that he would face a recall.
“What happens in our personal life has no bearing, no effect on the work we do as a council,” he said.
“You’re saying your personal life doesn’t have any impact? All of our personal lives...,” the mayor said.
“That’s not what I’m talking about,” Shemwell argued.
“I think it’s sad that we are sitting in this situation. I think it is sad we are having this conversation,” Fuller said. “And I think it’s sad that the negative publicity that’s being descended on our city because of many of these things that have occurred. I think it’s disgustingly sad.”
In May, Shemwell was stopped for speeding and refused to sign a citation for speeding and having an outdated address on his license. He publicly accusing the McKinney officer of pulling over for being black with dreadlocks.
But two weeks later after video of the arrest was made public, Shemwell brought a council measure forward to censure himself saying he’d “demonstrated a lack of judgment in the matter.”
Tuesday was merely a public hearing on changing the charter, in effect making it easier to get a recall election and changing the number of petition signatures needed.
The charter changes would have to be approved by the whole city before a recall election in an individual district could proceed.