SPANISH FORT, Ala. (WALA) – A 15-second video clip that allegedly shows Spanish Fort Mayor Mike McMillan slapping a now-fired city employee in city hall last year has been posted on a Baldwin County Facebook group.
The attorney for Lyndsey Cooper, the alleged slap victim, confirmed to FOX10 News late Wednesday night that the video is authentic and shows the incident in question.
“That’s it,” said Ed Smith, Cooper’s attorney.
In the video you see two people, Cooper and McMillan, looking at a computer screen at the front desk of Spanish Fort City Hall. McMillan then appears to try to touch the screen. Five seconds later, McMillan puts his hand up and appears to move it toward Cooper’s face. At that point, it appears Cooper’s head quickly turns.
For months, the City of Spanish Fort has denied requests to release the video citing open investigations.
The clip was posted Wednesday night by an account appearing to be from Baldwin County lawyer Jason Hadley in Baldwin County Unlimited, a public Facebook group with 1,700 members. FOX10 News has reached out to Hadley, but as of publication has not heard back.
Earlier in the day before posting the video, Hadley created a post in the group talking about the incident.
“Any male that slaps a female in the face, does not deserve to be an elected official, especially Mayor,” he wrote. “Everyone is either forgetting it happened or just flat out condoning the behavior. It’s actually appalling that the City is allowing him to remain Mayor with no apparent discipline, but instead, fires the worker! It’s embarrassing for our County. Also, if it was a mistake, which it was not, where’s the apology? May be a great guy, but morally, everything related to this incident is wrong, and there has been no remorse, only excuses.”
Cooper was fired from the City of Spanish Fort in June for insubordination, a firing her attorney claims was in retaliation for filing a criminal complaint accusing McMillan of slapping her.
McMillan’s misdemeanor harassment trial has been delayed and no date has been set yet.
Thursday afternoon the City of Spanish Fort released the following statement:
"The City of Spanish Fort has been very careful to respect the rights of all persons in the matter involving Lyndsey Cooper and Mayor McMillan, particularly since there is a pending criminal case that has not yet gone to trial. The accuser has rights, and persons accused are innocent until proven guilty. The City respects the judicial process, and the assigned Assistant District Attorney requested that the video of the incident not be released to the public prior to the trial, as it was determined that the video needed to be given context by witnesses who could testify regarding the incident in order to be fair to all parties. In an agreement with the Assistant District Attorney, neither the City nor the District Attorney’s office, to our knowledge, has released the video to the public in an effort to ensure that the adjudication of the criminal case is not prejudiced. For whatever reason, it appears that the video was posted in violation of the request from the District Attorney’s Office. It is unfortunate this occurred prior to trial and without the full context. The City will continue to cooperate in this matter in an effort to ensure that the parties have a fair trial."
It should be noted, McMillan is running for reelection.