Pictured are East Cleveland Mayor Gary Norton (wearing black suit and a light blue tie), and East Cleveland City Council President Thomas Wheeler (wearing grey suit and a patterned tie)
By Editor-in-Chief Kathy Wray Coleman, a-24-year journalist who trained at the Call and Post Newspaper in Cleveland, Ohio for 17 years, and who interviewed now President Barack Obama one-on-one when he was campaigning for president. As to the Obama interview,
CLEVELAND URBAN NEWS.COM-EAST CLEVELAND, Ohio -According to East Cleveland Police Chief Michael Cardilli and public records, a vandal shattered the City Hall office windows of former Mayor Gary Norton a day before he and city council president Thomas Wheeler were ousted from office in a close recall election.
Norton, on Tuesday, lost the opportunity to keep his job by 20 votes, 548-528, and Wheeler by 18 votes, 229-211, unofficial results of the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections reveal.
Per the city charter, council vice president Brandon King will now assume the helm as mayor pending a subsequent election.
In addition to vandalizing Norton's office, the windows were also shattered in the office of his secretary, a police report says.
Cardilli, who could be out of a job as police chief with the new administration, also said that a fan was broken by the vandal in the office of the former mayor's secretary, which would mean, if true, that someone entered City Hall the day of the incident.
Whether the vandal, which has not been caught, is on video camera is not known, and no arrests have been made.
Police say they have no suspects,
East Cleveland is a 99 percent Black and impoverished suburb of Cleveland and has a population of roughly 18,000 people.
The ousters of Norton and Wheeler came as they were pushing a controversial merger with Cleveland.
Those who pushed the recall, including Councilman Nate Martin, East Cleveland Board of Education President Una HR Keenon, residents and community activists Richard Fambro, Gerald Strothers, Ernie Smith and Devin Branch, and Bright Star Missionary Baptist Church Senior Pastor the Rev Dr. David L. Hunter, are primarily against the merger.
Some others are against it too, such as Democratic Councilwoman Barbara Thomas, who told Cleveland Urban News.Com that while she did not push the recall of Norton and Wheeler she is against a merger that she says is "not a good fix."
East Cleveland has a median income of $15,000 and is nearly bankrupt, according to state auditor David Yost, a Republican.
Norton Wheeler, new mayor Brandon King and East Cleveland City Council are all Democrats.