RIVIERA BEACH, Fla. - During the Riviera Beach City Council meeting on Oct. 18, councilwoman Lynne Hubbard admitted publicly to attending an invitation-only meeting at Hurst Chapel on Sept. 28 with Police Chief Clarence Williams.
Sources said a small group met at the church to strategize how to keep recently fired city manager Jonathan Evans out of office. Also in attendance was councilman Terence Davis.
Hubbard said on Oct. 18 that she asked Williams to escort her.
“When I called it was almost time for me to be at Hurst Chapel,” Hubbard said. “And I asked him could he send an officer? He said: “This is a little last minute, isn’t it?” And I said: “Yes it is.” And he said: “Well, I will drive by.”
Palm Beach County Police Benevolent Association President John Kazanjian said he has never heard of a chief of police providing safety detail to someone. “He would send an officer,” Kazanjian said.
At the night of the meeting, the chief was unable to explain to our reporter why he was at the meeting.
He said he wasn’t at the meeting and didn’t know what it was about.
On Oct. 18, Hubbard said the chief came to protect her.
“We’ve had a hostile situation everywhere I go,” Hubbard said. “He said: “Sit in your car. I’ll go in. I’ll check it out. And let you know when you need to come in.”
Sources said he called people and invited them to the meeting and that he made sure that the two council members were never in the room at the same time, figuring that might protect them from any possible Sunshine Law violations.
In Florida it’s against the law for public officials to do city business in private and without notice to the public.
“I was invited to say my two cents,” Hubbard said on Oct. 18. “I was able to say my two cents in about 10 seconds and I left.”
Riviera Beach resident Tommy Walker, a supporter of Evans, said he wanted to attend the meeting but was turned away by Williams.
After the meeting on Oct. 18, Hubbard refused to answer questions as to what she was giving her opinion on at the Hurst Chapel meeting.