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Person who aimed expletive during council meeting identified, resigns

Posted at 12:48 PM, Nov 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-11 16:17:27-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — UPDATE (3:14 p.m.): The man responsible for Tuesday's city council outburst was assistant director of parks and beach operations Joseph Johnson.

UPDATE (9:57 p.m.): Corpus Christi City Manager Peter Zanoni confirmed to KRIS 6 News late Tuesday that the outburst made during the morning's city council meeting was made by interim parks and recreation director Joseph Johnson, who has since resigned.

Zanoni said Johnson's resignation wasn’t accepted because Johnson directed the curse word at him, but because of where it was said – in a public meeting.

“There were a lot of people watching," he said. "It was tough to accept his resignation, but it would have been a strain on our ability to keep and hold people accountable.”

A curse word was heard over the loudspeakers during Tuesday's regularly-scheduled Corpus Christi City Council meeting, reportedly aimed at city manager Peter Zanoni.

The city manager was talking about COVID-19 and local airports in an open meeting when the words "F*** you, Peter" could be heard. City spokeswoman Deanna McQueen said she thought Zanoni was about to move his comments to airport management, but there has been no confirmation as to why the comment was made.

It is also unknown who made the comment. District 2 Councilman Ben Molina, Zanoni and Mayor Joe McComb were among the city officials present in chambers, but several other council members were attending the meeting via Zoom.

After the outburst, City Secretary Rebecca Huerta asked those attending virtually to mute their microphones.