San Marino mayor resigns after being caught throwing dog poop on neighbor's yard
San Marino Mayor Dennis Kneier resigned Wednesday a week and a half after video of the mayor tossing a bag of dog poop on his neighbor's yard went viral.
"I had a lapse of judgment and discarded dog waste on a neighbor’s walkway," Kneier said in his resignation letter. "It was insensitive, disrespectful and wrong. I have apologized to my neighbor for my action, and I will pay a fine for littering. I can understand why this matter has some questioning my ability to lead the council."
Kneier said wrote that he wanted to assure the council nothing like this will happen again, and that due to the embarrassment to both himself and the city, he was stepping down, effective immediately. The city confirmed this in a press release, with Vice Mayor Eugene Sun taking over as mayor — Kneier will stay on as a councilmember until his term ends in Nov. 2015.
"Be assured that my love for the City of San Marino is not diminished, and I will continue to do my best as a councilmember to fulfill the duties for which I was elected, and at the same time, restore the public’s confidence in me," Kneier wrote.
Sun is scheduled to act as mayor until June 27, when the council is set to meet and select a new mayor and vice mayor.
“This has been a challenging few days for our city, and we are hopeful that with Mr. Kneier’s decision with his public and private expressions of regret for the incident, we could move forward,” Sun said in a statement from the City of San Marino. “I think Mr. Kneier has done quite a few positive things for our community, and it’s regrettable that this happened," Sun said, the Pasadena Star-News reports.
Kneier previously apologized for his actions in a letter to his neighbor, Philip Lao. He also apologized in a city council meeting.
“I’m embarrassed about how it affects me and my family and my reputation," Kneier said in the meeting. "And because it’s been such widespread news coverage, how it affects possibly the image of San Marino, and that I really regret.”
Lao had previously said he planned to sue the city and the mayor for harassment. About 100 people attended a San Marino council meeting on June 11, according to the city, to speak about the incident.
The San Marino City Council votes among their own members to select the mayor, according to the city's website. All five council members serve without pay.
This story has been updated.