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Letter: Norwalk Dem head defends actions

Norwalk Democratic Town Committee Chairwoman Amanda Brown leads the recent Democratic mayoral meet and greet in South Norwalk.

By Amanda Brown

Norwalk Democratic Town Committee Chairwoman

NORWALK, Conn. – In my duties as chair, I was scheduled to attend both District B and District E meetings on July 1 as they were to discuss the underticket for 2013.  I had previously been intimidated and harassed by District E Chairman Bill Krummel via email over the BOE positions. So, I wanted to make sure every attempt was made to discuss any problems that may become huge disruptions at the July 16th nomination meeting. Hoping this goodwill action would diminish the opportunities for the consistent toxic environment that he and members of his district perpetrate at every turn.  I was already under fire for the most frivolous things and now this.  

The version of the report given by the Krummels earlier today on this matter is very inaccurate. As I was going to the meeting, I met up with the Krummels in the parking lot and we started to head towards the building. Regina Krummel and I were discussing her voicemail to me and we begin discussing emails that went back and forth. Bill Krummel interrupted the conversation and began yelling derogatory slurs.  I ignored him, maintained my composure and kept talking with Regina. Then he yelled, “you arrogant black bitch.” Then he was in my face and Regina Krummel came over and pushed me. I was trying to protect myself when Regina fell.  Bill was hollering racial slurs and opened his hand and slapped the left side of my face.  In fear of more physical attacks, I defended myself.  As I was trying to walk away to call the police the Krummels grabbed my arm and wouldn’t let it go until I said I wouldn’t call. Unbeknownst to them, Gordon Tully was already in the process of calling law enforcement and they were on their way. We were all waiting for them when they arrived.

It is very unfortunate that this matter occurred. Nevertheless, no matter how old you are, you have no right to push or slap anyone, especially when they are operating in the capacity of their elected position, even if you dislike them. Times are long gone when you can beat people into submission because you are older, socio-economically well off and mad. Every hostile and threatening slur that came out of Mr. Krummel’s mouth was an indication of his racial insensitivity. He hit me because I wouldn’t do what he wanted. The members of his own district wanted to get rid of him and I had received complaints about his behavior in the past but never in a million years did I expect this grown, educated man to strike me. I was doing my job as chair. I have been humiliated, slandered and will receive more backlash from this incident than the other two parties associated, not because I am in the wrong but because, I defended myself.

Amanda Brown

Norwalk Democratic Town Committee Chairwoman

25 comments

KSully July 3, 2013 at 2:42 pm

What a travesty for Norwalk Dems. Ms. Brown should do the honorable thing and do as fellow Democrat, Mayoral candidate and apparently the only Democratic mayoral candidate with integrity, Matt Miklave, has suggested. Resign Ms. Brown.

M. Murray's July 3, 2013 at 2:44 pm

Will you be posting copies of these intimidating and harassing emails to back up your version of events?

Suzanne July 3, 2013 at 2:50 pm

No apology, just a feeling sorry for yourself mode because you are going to have to pay for your reprehensible actions. You know what? You should. Resign now. If things were escalating to the physical, you should have WALKED AWAY. In fact, your version bears nothing like the eye witness account nor the account earlier reported on Nancy on Norwalk that was apparently agreed to by all at the scene. That would include you. You have not been taught the basics of socially acceptable behavior even if racial slurs and pushing were involved: the picture of Mr. Krummel tells the story no matter your apologist rant above. I could never support such behavior as justifiable no matter what excuses you give. You have not only hurt yourself, you have hurt the name of our community and the reputations of any number of committees. Shame. Resign. Do the honorable thing.

YourDaddy July 3, 2013 at 2:55 pm

If Ms. Brown’s version of events is true, she should have pressed charges. You can’t pontificate about reducing violence as a political leader or candidate and then proceed to beat up an 84-year-old man.

ScopeonNorwalk July 3, 2013 at 3:02 pm

She should have pressed charges and if the Krummels felt they were wrong, as they tried to portray in the previous article, they would have pressed charges. Everyone was wrong and it wasn’t just Ms. Brown that was wrong. Krummel should resign and Ms. Brown should resign and the Dems should not nominate a BOE candidate that initiates violence as she would be representative of our school district and no teacher could tell students that they should use their words not their hands with a BOE member that initiates physical contact.

MPWard July 3, 2013 at 3:23 pm

Is Norwalk hosting a Reality TV show?? Sad to watch the local Democratic Party implode not only behind the scenes but also on the front pages. If this keeps up, Dick will have no problems in November.

NorwalkNeedsAChange July 3, 2013 at 3:24 pm

Go Amanda! Everyone who places blame on Amanda Brown should be ashamed of themselves. Two old fools with to much time on their hands, didn’t hear what they wanted and flipped out. I don’t understand why anyone would want to be Chair but she took it and this is what she gets. SAD

JustAParent July 3, 2013 at 4:31 pm

Amanda, if you we’re assaulted and insulted as you say you did, why did you not charge them for what they did. Those charges could of been a concrete and reasonable means to have them resign. .

0ldtimer July 3, 2013 at 7:25 pm

She says she tried to walk away, to call the police, but Bill grabbed her arm and would not let go until she agreed to not call the police. It is entirely possible she is telling the truth. It strikes me as odd that Mr Tully was unable to recall what happened, unless he was trying to protect an old friend. As Harry said, don’t rush to judgement without all the facts.

piberman July 4, 2013 at 8:59 pm

What’s missing from the discussion dear friends is Ms. Brown’s “offer” to the Party Central Committee to resign as Chairman. That puts the decision onus where it should properly rest. Ms. Brown presumably serves at the behest of the Party Chiefs. Not the 4 candidates.
If the Party Chiefs support Ms. Brown’s continued service that should be the end of the matter. And vice-versa. That’s why we have a Central Committee.

Don't Panic July 4, 2013 at 10:29 pm

That presumption is incorrect. Ms Brown is elected by the members of the Norwalk DTC, who are themselves elected by party members residing in Norwalk. Three of the candidates for Mayor happen to be voting members of the DTC. Their opinions, whether given publicly or privately, may be weighed by Ms Brown as she makes her decision.

Suzanne July 4, 2013 at 11:11 pm

piberman and Don’t Panic, Why does the decision to resign rest with Ms. Brown? Clearly she does not know how to handle constituent problems without resorting to violence or with equanimity by walking away. I feel like I am in an alternate universe reading your comments: a Central Committee? The Candidates? The DTC? What???? This is not the representation I want as a citizen of Norwalk nor in my City Government. She seems very articulate and passionate about her work – give her another job where her temper does not come into play, where the example she sets is one of reconciliation, even with the most difficult of situations, and not publicly brawling in a parking lot. It is shocking that instead of a humble apology with an explanation for her behavior she instead puts forth a defense. Wow! What is THAT teaching our children about adult behavior?

Don't Panic July 5, 2013 at 12:23 am

Suzanne, this is not a government position, nor is it a government job, so it is not a matter of firing someone or transferring them. It is a political organization which operates under rules set down by members of the organization. She was elected to lead the DTC by its members. Those members were elected by other Norwalk Democrats.

Ms Brown IS passionate, and does care about the well-being of Norwalk. The organization certainly recognized these and many other fine qualities she possesses when they elected her. One mistake should not be the end of the world, provided one learns from it.

In this instance, she and Mr. Krummel failed to take their disagreements through the channels available to them. Frustrations ran high and this was the result. The point of asking for resignations is that these are leaders within the party. If they cannot resolve disputes equitably and agreeably, how can they be expected to mediate for the other party members?

If you are a Democrat and live in Norwalk, and are interested in more of a say in who represents you, then by all means, get involved. http://www.norwalkdems.com/ndtc/ or http://www.norwalkdems.com/ndtc/

William203 July 5, 2013 at 1:15 am

K Scully and Suzanne, you both sound ridiculous and insensitive, especially after hearing the facts from both sides of this matter, it clearly was started by the Krummel’s but you both decide to ignore the truth and focus on just Amanda’s involvement, you should at the very least refrain from commenting if your going to be closed minded. Furthermore, I highly disagree that you both would have the same response if Amanda was white. So, let’s call it for what it is… because racism is still alive and well and the more you make these outlandish comments the more you prove my point.

William203 July 5, 2013 at 1:16 pm

The issue is that you have individuals in the democratic party that despise the fact that Amanda is a BLACK woman and leading the party and I’m sure individuals within the party such as Andy Garfunkel, Matt Miklave are sinking their teeth in this because she doesn’t support their campaign for mayor and Diane Lauricella and Susan Wallerstein doesn’t care for Amanda because she doesn’t allow them to spearhead the DTC with their personal agendas.

(This comment has been edited to conform to our comment policy)

kamiko60 July 5, 2013 at 3:01 pm

you need to take race out of the situation, and you’ve got a woman in her 30’s attacking elderly people in their 80’s. they also have loads of money to make sure Amanda would not see daylight for a good long time. reverse the situation and color. what do you think a court would have done to a young white woman knocking down a old black woman, then assaulting her elderly husband when he tried to protect her? exactly, they would have thrown the book at the young woman, and because the older couple had money. are you kidding me? Amanda didn’t have a chance, and it was in her best interest not to press charges. regardless of her color. Now, they need to find a way to make this up to one another, to set a good example for the young!

Suzanne July 5, 2013 at 3:37 pm

I said it before and I will say it again: not about gender and not about race and not about ageism. It is about BEHAVIOR among ADULTS who are appointed politically (and separating politics from government is certainly a bit disingenuous when one does not exist without the other) to be examples to the community about how to resolve issues. I simply don’t want these people representing me politically or, if one must separate the two, governmentally because they don’t represent good values. There can be disagreement (that is all we seem to hear or experience from BOTH parties) and resolution is the hard work of dialogue and agreeing, sometimes, to disagree. Physical resolution in the form of violent behavior, pushing, slapping or punching by ANYONE is wrong!!!!! I went to the DTC WEB Site and I read Amanda’s statement upon her appointment as Chairperson. It is thoughtful, insightful and filled with, I guess now, was rhetoric about unity and peace in a difficult time (don’t quote me, people, I am paraphrasing.) She was absolutely eloquent: where is THAT PERSON? Where did she go? Certainly not the one that punched and severely injured an annoying, cat-calling old man. It is time for she and the Krummels to take a breather: this kind of behavior is not good for our community.

As to being involved in local government, I have attended several Committee and Council meetings at various levels and found every last one to be less than candid, the constituent the last to be considered in the process and many interactions between group members toxic and disrespectful. Why as a citizen would I want to enjoin myself into such a dysfunctional political family? Common sense does not exist from my perspective and, especially in development issues, the pricey guy with the best lawyer, the developer, always wins and to heck with the neighborhoods. One can only speak to a vacuum for so long and realize that not a single word matters or is heard. Cynical? Nope! Just practical – I do not find Norwalk politics at all representative of the many good people who live in my community. We live good lives in spite of City Hall not because of it.

D(ysfunctional)TC July 5, 2013 at 4:35 pm

If the DTC keeps Amanda in place, not only will they guarantee a Moccia win this fall but it will also tell a lot about the type of people who are running the Democrat machine in town. Zero accountability for one’s own personal actions. Sad.

Adam Douglas July 6, 2013 at 7:58 am

This is pathetic. Ms. Brown is lying through her teeth … From witness accounts, Mr. Brown instigated the matter. She should resign. This kind of Maury-Povich-Show shenanigans is not what anyone would consider professional behavior of a woman holding public office. To think that Ms. Brown would assault senior citizens–giving an 84 year old man a black eye–and then lie and try to spin the events! …

(This comment has been edited to conform with our guidelines.)

TG July 6, 2013 at 1:52 pm

Adam Douglas, which witness said she started it? Even the Krummels admit that first physical contact came from each of them. The police report indicates this.

J_Mac July 7, 2013 at 7:12 pm

Confronting an individual in an aggressive and threatening manner such as positioning yourself too close while you scream at them, wave an object at them ( no matter the object ), and restrict their movement such as preventing them from getting out of their is assaultive behavior.

That kind of threatening and assaultive behavior justifies the recipient of such behavior to respond in some defensive way – pushing the assaultive person away would not be considered out of place nor would it be considered the first assaultive action.

The fact that someone would approach an elderly person in such an aggressive manner is out of place and, depending on the particulars, an assault.

Ms Brown is lucky that Ms Krummel did not have a heart attack. She could be looking at manslaughter charges. The fact that Ms Brown shoved her hard enough to knock Ms Krummel to the ground took this confrontation to another level.

Mr Krummel’s slap to Ms Brown could be defended as action in defense of others. Ms Brown might have a harder time defending her hit to Mr Krummel if it is found she initiated the confrontation with her assaultive and/ or threatening behavior toward Mrs Krummel initially.

Having said all that I’m not sure if pressing charges and ratcheting up the ugliness helps in any way.

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