Florida Rep. Cleared of Bullying Colleague


BY BUDDY NEVINS




An Orlando Democratic lawmaker has been cleared of bullying, threatening and verbally assaulting a Broward Democratic House member.

A Special Master hired by the House found no probable cause that actions by State Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith of Orlando violated state House rules.

Smith was accused by State Rep. Anika Omphroy of Lauderdale Lakes of bullying her while several other watched at a February state Democratic Party event in Orlando. 

“I was bullied threatened and verbally assaulted by Florida State Representative Carlos Guillermo Smith,” Omphroy complained in a Feb. 11 letter to the Speaker of the House Jose Oliva.  “…Representative Carlos Guillermo Smith pounded his hand and lashed out at me with a barrage of offensive verbal assaults, and a display of blatant aggression in the presence of others who witnessed his behavior….”

She accused Smith of violating House rules governing harassment.

 “No woman should suffer mental anguish or emotional distress from anyone,” she wrote the Speaker. 

But Special Master Jim Waldman, a North Broward attorney and former Broward state representative, said Omphroy was overreacting. 

Waldman interviewed 13 witnesses. The witnesses “either observed the alleged incident or were witnesses the parties suggested,” Waldman wrote.

He also viewed two videos taken at the event.

The dispute centered on Omphroy comments during a debate on a party resolution. 

Carlos Guillermo Smith

Smith walked over to Omphroy to discuss her comment. 

“…the complained about action took place in a public setting where Rep. Smith confronted Rep. Omphroy by kneeling down in front of her to speak so that he would not be looking down upon her.  He used his hands for emphasis; repeated his questions to her several times; and she did not ask him to move. Rep. Smith never touched her nor did he raise his voice to her; but that she felt intimidated by the way he said what he said. I further find that she left the conversation before he did and appeared in control,” the report by Waldman states.

The conclusion: 

“…there is no probable cause to believe that a violation of the House Code of Conduct…I further find there is no probable cause to believe that Rep. Smith has acted in a manner which threatens the honor of the House. I find that Rep. Smith’s conduct falls into the category of expressive conduct.”

Waldman wrote “no probable cause” in bold face three times in his four-page conclusions to emphasize his point. 

Under House rules, once a Special Master concludes there is no probable cause to sustain a complaint the issue is dropped. 

Anika Omphroy




5 Responses to “Florida Rep. Cleared of Bullying Colleague”

  1. Chaz Stevens, Flatulist says:

    Oh my god, what the fuck is wrong with you millennials?

    Always fucking whining … grow or borrow a pair.

  2. Tony Washington says:

    Those who make needless #metoo complaints damage the cause. Remember that Ms.Omphroy.

  3. Observer says:

    Smith “pounded his hand” and “lashed out at me with a barrage of offensive verbal assaults, and a display of blatant aggression in the presence of others who witnessed his behavior….”

    That’s every day in the legislature.

  4. Typical says:

    She is a trouble maker who won by default. This won’t be the last time she is affronted because someone does not agree with her.

  5. A Reader says:

    Throwback Thursday:

    “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen!”.

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