Justices appoint 3-judge panel to hear Parkersburg mayor case

By Kyla Asbury | Apr 20, 2015

CHARLESTON – The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals has chosen three circuit judges to hear allegations regarding Parkersburg Mayor Robert Newell and the allegations that he participated in misconduct and should be removed from office.

Chief Justice Margaret L. Workman signed to administrative order on April 17, choosing Circuit Judges Omar J. Aboulhosn, Lawrance S. Miller Jr. and Joanna I. Tabit to preside over the case.

Aboulhosn will head the panel for the purpose of taking all actions necessary by West Virginia Code, with court scheduled to convene June 4 and June 5 at the Wood County Judicial Building, according to the administrative order.

The petition was filed on April 16 by Rob Cornelius, the chairman of the Wood County Republican Party.

Cornelius' petition alleges that Newell should be removed from office for official misconduct, malfeasance in office, incompetence and neglect of duty. He filed the petition for immediate removal of Newell as mayor.

The petition alleges that Newelhas engaged in private and public conduct that betrayed both the higher standards held by leaders and meets the standard of removal of a municipal office defined in West Virginia code.

The petition was filed after allegations that Newell had an affair with the city finance director, Ashley Flowers.

Flowers has admitted to the affair, while Newell, who has not denied the affair, has stated that the rumors are exaggerated.

Newell has denied any wrongdoing.

Wood Circuit Court case number: 15-P-47

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