VALLEJO, Calif. - A grassroots group announced Thursday it is launching a campaign to recall Vallejo City Councilman and candidate for mayor Hakeem Brown, amid shocking reports of domestic abuse.
"Mr. Brown it is time to step aside," said longtime Vallejo resident Myrna Hayes, who is helping spearhead the recall.
"Sometimes the person, the turmoil, the chaos the trauma overrides the person's ability to serve," she said.
"He doesn't seem to want to take ownership of his bad acts. And he can't be trusted," said Joe Feller, another recall organizer.
The recall comes as more allegations are emerging about brown's criminal past especially regarding domestic abuse.
The online publication Open Vallejo revealed Brown served four years in prison on charges that included assaulting his wife in 2002. Brown has referred to it publically as a "scuffle with a domestic partner."
In 2012, he was accused of abusing another woman identified as his wife. Open Vallejo says court documents reveal that in that relationship Brown had imposed a set of rules demanding total obedience.
In the end, Brown was convicted of violating a restraining order and received probation.
In an emailed statement from Brown Thursday, he says: "I make no excuses for my past and I understand and regret the disappointment and pain I have caused to members of the community. I will work every day to earn that trust back and forge a better future for our city.”
Any recall will not be settled by November. If Brown loses his bid for mayor he still would have two years left on his city council term. If Brown wins the mayoral election, organizers still plan to try to recall him.
"It's going to be a tough year. We have to have confidence and trust in all our elected officials," says feller.
Recall organizers need about 45-hundred signatures to put it on the 2021 ballot.