Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Gibson Involved In Scuffle With Deputy During Black Expo

WTHR-TV reports that City-County Councilor Ron Gibson (D) got into a scuffle with a Marion Co. Sheriff's deputy during Black Expo while trying to enter the Blu Lounge as a "VIP Guest" along with several female companions. Deputy Jean Burkert claims that Gibson had slurred speech, put his hands on her and shoved her a couple of times when she asked the crowd of people outside the club to move back. Gibson's account is quite different. He says:

My name was on the VIP list at Club Blu," Gibson said. Councilman Ron Gibson made the VIP list at The Blu Lounge, located on South Merdian Street near Union Station. The owners reserve the VIP room for special guests, but on July 16th, Gibson and his two friends tried to get in among a huge crowd. "Out of nowhere, this deputy, white female in uniform, comes up and starts yelling, 'You need to move back and move back now'," Gibson said. "I did drink that night," Gibson said, "But it was within a seven-hour span." Gibson insists he never touched Deputy Burkert and calmly addressed her. "I said, 'I am city councilman Ron Gibson, and I would never talk to people like that and yet alone my boss.' She said, 'You are not my boss. Frank Anderson is my boss'," Gibson said. "I was totally sober," Gibson said. "I was in my right mind. I was respectful towards her. I never raised my voice."
It's troubling that Gibson can't help but mention in his interview with WTHR that Deputy Burkert is "white" and everyone standing outside, including himself, was black--the clear implication being that he was picked on by her because of his race. Marion Co. Prosecutor Carl Brizzi (R) is investigating the incident, but the smear campaign against Deputy Burkert is in full swing. According to WTHR's report, the sheriff's office reported that Deputy Burkert was suspended by Sheriff Anderson for 3 days after a domestic disturbance incident in 2003. And Sheriff Anderson is now investigating why Burkert was working part-time at an establishment that serves alcohol in violation of departmental policy. You can see where this one's headed. Deputy Burkert is likely to pay big for crossing Gibson, right or wrong.


Anonymous said...


Check my show notes page at WXNT.com for some more details.


Gary R. Welsh said...

Abdul--I see from your show notes that he admits he was drinking and that it happened around 2:00 a.m. in the morning. Those facts don't help him. He says he was allowed into the bar, but his 2 female guests weren't allowed in, and that when he went outside to check on them--that's when the confrontation occurred with the deputy--as she yelled at people to move back. If there's a crowd, I suppose you would have to raise your voice to get people's attention. He admits that he said "he wouldn't yell at my boss." I could understand why the deputy would be offended by his suggestion that he was her boss. His own admissions don't lend credibility to his story, particularly when he admits driving home in his own car after consuming alcohol. And he tells you that he reported her conduct to Sheriff Anderson. I'm betting that this incident blows over for Gibson and is just the beginning of the deputy's problems.

Gary R. Welsh said...

WRTV adds in its report that the deputy's complaint against Gibson alleges that he told her he "would have her job" and used profanity when speaking to her.

Gary R. Welsh said...

Based upon the Star's account in today's paper, Gibson reported the deputy to Sheriff Anderson before she filed her complaint against him on Monday. What this suggests is that if Gibson would have just left well enough alone, this entire incident would never have come to light. Also, Rishawn Biddle has some tough words for AI over at Expresso. He doesn't like the fact that AI points out that Gibson emphasized the fact that Deputy Burkert is white in defending his actions. Rishawn uses the term "alleged emphasis". It's a fact Rishawn. Watch the video tape of his interview. Rishawn also complains that AI "seems to get its gander up every time race is mentioned [and] needs to be a little less sensitive about the matter especially given its own proclivities towards identity politics." And if I'm not mistaken, it was none other than you Rishawn who recently accused African-Americans of "Black group think" and automatically defending the actions of an African-American, right or wrong.

Anonymous said...

Wow...a real hornet's nest.

The most surprising thing in these posts, and in the news articles/stories?

Ron was there with two female guests.

As for Hesaid/Shesaid:

Why is the officer's or councilman's race an issue at all? And, rude behavior isn't reduced because of the office either one holds--councilman or deputy.

Civility is gone.

Two AM, several drinks, he drove home afterward. Damn, RG: once this incident occured, why didn't good judgment kick in, and call a cab?

Evidently common sense is gone, too.

Over/under on the deputy's tenure: August 30. Gimme under.

Don't kid yourselves: race is a huge issue in city government. Why else would the council's most qualified and dignified officer, Ms. Sanders, not be president, while we've gone through three lackluster (that's putting it kindly) presidents in three years?
Ch.16 coverage of this City Council is becomming High Camp entertainment. Leadership skills are absent. ("Juice" anyone?)

Anonymous said...

He said he was drinking over a 7 hour period. I don't know about you, but when I drink over a 7 hour period, the word sober is rarely used to describe me.

Anonymous said...

Remember, folks, this is from a councilman whose original opposition to the HRO was based, in his own words, on his "intense religious beliefs."

So, whatever religion it is, it must ignore gluttony (too much to drink), pride, and all kinds of common sense.

Church of What's Happnin' Now?

On that particular weekend, I, too, was downtown, and it was packed. RG needs to learn how to call a cab, too...all the news reports indicate he drove home after this incident. Why even risk the possibility of getting pulled over?

Anonymous said...

Gibson works for charter schools too. Nice example for the kids.

credo said...

two wrongs don't make a right.. What was the real issues here...but what colored the discussion...panties in a bunch when racially describing raced whites..get over it.

The deputy is in trouble for not asking questions first and bullying second.

Anonymous said...

Credo (or Ron, or whomever), here's a few points to consider:

1. Start a thought and finish it. It makes it easier for folks to understand what you're saying.
2. Pick up a copy of either the AP Stylebook or Stunk & White's Elements of Style. Or hell, any fourth grade grammar book.
3. Subject/verb agreement.
4. The deputy and RG are both public officials. Each has a responsibility to behave properly.
It's probably true both behaved badly. But, so far as we know, only one was drinking and behaving badly. And then driving himself home.

Guess who will lose a job over it?
That over/under thing, Aug.31, I'll take UNDER. Madame Deputy, the Wackenhut employment line forms over there.

credo said...


panties in a bunch..get over it...this is a blog..you may not like what is written..but I'll spell it out for you, and please edit others posting for wrting technique and you will see they are not writing for journalistic excellents or some professors..or you forgot what the blog was about???
Clue: "raced white deputy may lose job because she did not check out the brotha credentials...too bad!!!

Anonymous said...

Will someone please explain what is meant by 'raced white'?


Gary R. Welsh said...

It's his way of saying her race is white.

credo said...

Raced white...not really knowing your ethnic background..but based on skin color, self-identified as not belonging to the group, identified as black.