The impeachment hearing for Ellisville Mayor Adam Paul has been moved back again, placing it the day before a municipal election that could shift the balance of power on the city council.
The hearing to consider the charges leveled against Paul will now take place on April 1, back from its previous March 27 date. The change was made as a result of a request from Paul’s lawyer who is seeking more time to prepare and conduct depositions of city officials.
The Ellisville City Council discussed the request during a work session Wednesday and unanimously agreed to the extension.
The hearing had been planned to be held at moved from Ellisville City Hall to Ellisville Elementary to accommodate what is expected to be a large crowd. The location for the April 1 date was not set, but city officials indicated they would keep it at the school if it was available.
The move came as a surprise to Paul, who was present at Wednesday’s meeting and told Patch afterward that it was “news to him.”
The initial 11-page resolution included charges that Paul drank and used profanity on the job, recorded confidential meetings and usurped authority. Some charges were dropped at the council meeting last week. Paul, suspended from office since March 6, has denied all allegations.
Emails Turned Over
On Monday, a lawyer appointed by the city to preside over the hearing sided with Paul’s attorney Chet Pleban and handed over a trove of email communications between city staff and council members.
Pleban explained that the city had objected to the release of the emails on the basis that they were protected under attorney-client privilege. However, Pleban said the resolution adopted by the council calling for Paul’s removal waived any such privilege.
With even the now pushed back trial date coming up quickly, Paul’s legal representation is scrambling to gather enough evidence to mount a defense.
“It took us two weeks to get these documents. A lot of valuable time has been lost. We will do our best to try and get up to speed,” Pleban said.
Ellisville City Attorney Paul Martin, who drafted the resolution calling for Paul’s impeachment, has previously declined to comment on the specific allegations and said further evidence will be presented at the hearing.