The judge acquits the mayor of Ourense of minor ill-treatment for shoving a union leader, but sees his reaction as ‘disproportionate’

The judge acquits the mayor of Ourense of minor ill-treatment for shoving a union leader, but sees his reaction as ‘disproportionate’

Gonzalo Pérez Jácome, the controversial mayor of Ourense, has been acquitted of the crime of ill-treatment he was charged with for shoving a trade unionist who yelled at him with a megaphone at close range in May 2022. The city’s No. 2 Trial Court does not doubt that there was a push against Lola Panero, a veteran CC OO trade unionist, but stresses that the councilwoman only wanted to “disconnect the complainant” and prevent her from “shuttering the megaphone.” use a few inches of his face.” The judge understands that Jácome’s reaction was “slightly disproportionate” and that the thrust was “sudden”, but he decides that it was in no way a crime, so he does not impose a penalty on the councilman .

The judgment known today assumes the representation of the incident of May 3, 2022 at the gates of the town hall of Ourense, recorded on video from many angles and not questioned by any of the parties. That morning, Jácome, who governs the city with the support of the PP, met Panero as he was walking down the steps of the Municipal Building and standing in front of protesters who were striking city bus workers to whom he was said to be addressing. The union leader brought her the megaphone and the mayor, clearly annoyed, pushed her and held her for several seconds.

The judge sees it as proven that the mayor also wanted to approach the demonstrators with a megaphone that day, but acknowledges that he had previously made “a change of attitude” until he apparently became “angry”. He then turned to Panero, to whom he said, “Don’t touch me,” as the sentence says. This, according to the evidence, causes the unionist to “drop her mask, pick up the megaphone a few inches from the mayor’s face” and yell at him “the expression is wrong [habla]“. Immediately afterwards, Jácome shoves her “abruptly” and holds the woman “for several seconds” until “several people intervene, then a small discussion begins” between the mayor and trade unionists.

The judge believes the mayor’s intention to stop the unionist “again using the megaphone near her face” was “obvious”. In his court statement, the mayor emphasized that he never wanted to mistreat or attack the complainant, but only wanted to remove the loudspeaker from his face, fearing that the high volume could damage his hearing. The sentence reads: “The fact that he held her for several seconds after the push [es una acción] which appears to be intended to prevent the complainant from using the megaphone close to her face again.”

The fact that a conversation started between the two after the incident, in which the mayor “seems to blame the union member,” reinforces the judge’s position. “Well it’s true that his reaction [del alcalde] That may be a bit disproportionate, but in no case does it reach an intensity that is punishable by law,” the judge ruled before ordering the acquittal and determining the costs ex officio. This judgment will be appealed.

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Jácome’s case was launched last June for allegedly diverting nearly 100,000 from his political faction Democracia Ourensana (DO) to his own television channel Auria TV.