Councilman Shreve Files Sexual Harassment Complaint Against Council President Otis

It was for an incident which happened a few months ago.

Frederick, Md (KM)  It’s another example of the unfriendly relationship between Frederick County Councilman Billy Shreve and Council President Bud Otis. Last week, Shreve filed a sexual harassment complaint against Otis.

Shreve said he approached Otis at Winchester Hall following a meeting and asked about getting an item on the Council’s agenda. “So, he came out and we were standing there, and I asked him what do I have to do to get something on the agenda. And he said ‘first, you have to ask nicely,'” says Shreve. He continues: “I responded to that and I said ‘I am asking nicely. What else do I have to do.’ And he said ‘you can start by getting on your knees,'” says Shreve.

After that, he filed the complaint.

The Frederick Extra, an on line publication, says it has obtained the complaint filed with the County Human Resources Department. In it, Otis says he said he did say the “on your knees” comment, but it was meant to be “sarcastic.”

“My response is no one should be talked to in that manner, sarcasm or not,” Shreve said. “I think it’s serious. The way he talked to me it didn’t make me feel good. And no one should have to put up with someone like Bud Oits.”

WFMD News contacted Bud Otis, who said he wasn’t going to comment on the complaint.

The complaint will now be investigated by the County Human Resources Department.

For many people, getting on your knees is often a means begging, and is not usually associated with sexual harassment. WFMD News asked Shreve if equating “getting on your knees” with sexual harassment is kind of a stretch. “No, I think anyone is going to think the same thing when they hear that,” he says. “I think that’s the first thing that’s going to come to their mind is sexual harassment.”

Otis has had a difficult relationship with Shreve and Councilman Kirby Delauter. He was elected as Council President over Shreve in December, 2014. All three were elected as Republicans, but Otis changed his party affiliation to independent earlier this year. He continues to hold the job as President.

On the Council, Otis has been voting with Democrats Jerry Donald, Jessica Fitzwater and MC Keegan-Ayer in most issues.

By Kevin McManus