McKinney City Council has started a discussion about rewriting the city charter to simplify the recall process, which would make it easier for voters to remove an elected official from office.
The conversation centers on current City Councilman La’Shadion Shemwell, who was charged earlier this month with continuous family violence, a felony.
The arrest is Shemwell’s second public run-in with police this year after an incident in May when he alleged racial profiling following a traffic stop. Shemwell accused the officer of pulling him over for “being black with dreadlocks,” before later apologizing and making a motion to censure himself.
During Tuesday night’s council meeting, Shemwell did not attempt to prevent any potential change to the city recall procedure. But he did, again, claim that race was a motivation for his predicament.
"If we're changing the rules, then we might as well make it 'Whites Only,’” Shemwell said, which drew immediate rebukes from other elected leaders on the dais.
In a written statement to NBC DFW, McKinney Mayor George Fuller rejected the idea that Shemwell is a target of racial prejudice.
"His indictment of the criminal justice system, which includes our esteemed police force, and further claims of racial and socioeconomic inequality being responsible for his latest incident, is a reckless diversion from accountability,” Fuller noted. “It is not law enforcement, or the judicial system, that has levied the allegations against Mr. Shemwell. It was, in fact, a mother of his children.”
Council will again address the issue of amending the city charter, with respect to recall elections, at its next meeting.