Long Island News
Hempstead town clerk arrested, declines to resign
BELLMORE (WABC) -- Police arrested Mark Bonilla over the weekend charging him with official misconduct and attempted coercion charges.
Bonilla emerged from his home in Bellmore standing with his attorney. Bonilla didn't want to speak on camera deferring to his attorney Adrian DiLuzio.
"This is just an accusation. It happens to all of us," DiLuzio said.
Diluzio says Bonilla has been completely blinded-sided by the allegations.
Hempstead town supervisor Kate Murray says about a month ago two employees in Bonilla's office filed sexual harassment complaints against Bonilla.
"We have zero tolerance for sexual harassment," Murray said.
The Nassau County District Attorney says it has evidence that Bonilla tried to bribe a town employee to get intimate pictures of one of the alleged complainants.
According to the district attorney, Bonilla was going to use the pictures to silence the employee who made the sexual harassment claims.
Bonilla's family says the entire thing is just a smear campaign. On his Facebook page, you can see tons of posts from people saying they support him. So do many of his neighbors.
"I'm 100% behind him, I think he's a great neighbor. Neighbor first you know, and he's been a great town clerk," Pascalli said.
However, the town supervisor says the accusations are enough to warrant a resignation.
"I believe that Mr. Bonilla should resign," Murray said.
The allegations have heightened emotions in Bonilla's neighborhood where many people stand behind him.
While Eyewitness News was outside the home, a neighbor assaulted an Eyewitness News photographer and preceded to kick and stomp on his camera.
The police were called and they proceeded to arrest the neighbor.
"Whoever kicked the camera behaved badly, Mark would never condone that type of behavior. Look, Mark is just not that kind of guy," LiLuzio said.
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