A Louisiana town council meeting ended in chaos when its mayor got into a shouting match with residents and allegedly smacked a phone out of the hands of a woman recording the scene.
Mayor Kesia Lemoine of Elton, a town of more than 1,000 people in Louisiana’s Jefferson Davis Parish, was charged with battery for the Monday outburst, KPLC reported.
Video shows Lemoine yelling and being held back by some of those who attended the meeting as she exits the room.
She then turns her attention to the woman filming, and tries to swat the phone out of her hands, prompting the woman to yell, “Keep your f—ing hands off of me!”
The mayor is held back by someone else, and led away as a police officer also steps in, according to the clip.
Lemoine defended her actions to local outlet KLFY, saying someone threatened her family. The alleged threat wasn’t captured on video.
“As a mother, I’m a protector and that really made me come out of character,” Lemoine said. “I do apologize for my actions because I am the mayor and they hold me to a different standard. But also I am human and I do have feelings.”
Tensions rose during the meeting when the topic of grants came up and someone asked about a grant writer who is believed to have been fired.
“We’re talking about the budget, you way off on something else,” Lemoine snapped, proceeding to get visibly more annoyed. “We are on the budget. You out of order. You say something else, we’re gonna escort you out.”
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