Judge dismisses lawsuit brought by Ashford mayor against council

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Houston County (WTVY)-- A judge Friday dismissed a lawsuit brought by Ashford Mayor Johnathan Grecu against the city council that voted earlier this year to dilute Grecu’s authority.

The mayor claimed the council, in June, voted to grant members authority over city offices and determine salaries. Grecu said the ordinance violates Alabama state law and sought to block its implementation.

However, Houston County Circuit Judge Butch Binford ruled that Grecu’s lawsuit lacks “material fact” and tossed it.

Defendants were council members Gary Gibson, Carole Barfield, and Denise Herndon, and the city of Ashford.

A call to city hall Friday seeking comment on the lawsuit wasn’t answered.

This is not the first issue for Ashford this year. John Whitehurst was removed from the council in February after another judge ruled he failed to meet residency requirements.

Assistant Police Chief Clint Williams was arrested in June and later convicted for soliciting prostitution. He was terminated and is appealing his conviction.

City Clerk Amy Brunson was charged with shoplifting several hundred dollars in merchandise from a department store. Her case is currently pending though Brunson recently indicated she plans to enter a pretrial diversion program.