Havering councillor Melvin Wallace expelled from Conservative Party following sexual harassment investigation
- Credit: Archant
A former Conservative mayor has been expelled from the party following an investigation into alleged sexual harassment against an ex-councillor.
Councillor Melvin Wallace, who has been an elected member of Havering Council representing Squirrel’s Heath ward since 2014, has been “immediately expelled indefinitely”, following an investigation by the party’s disciplinary sub-committee.
The committee’s report says: “The panel is of the view that the respondent’s conduct has damaged the reputation of Conservative councillors who would regard his conduct as totally unacceptable and intolerable.
“Cllr Melvin Wallace will be immediately expelled indefintely from membership of the Conservative Party.”
In a statement made to the party, Linda Trew, who was a councillor until last year, describes how on December 5, 2016, when she bumped into Cllr Wallace in a car park in Western Road, Romford, he grabbed her while she was holding two bags of shopping, and allegedly made an inappropriate comment and sexually harassed her.
Later that same day, she sent an email to Mr Wallace saying she was “shocked and offended” to which he replied, “I was being naughty”.
The report continues: “The panel notes with concern that the complainant found the entire experience of making her complaint stressful and difficult.
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“Her fear of being disbelieved, of being unsupported, isolated and ostracised and/or being seen as “a trouble-maker” compounded the stress she felt in making the original allegation.”
In response to the allegations, Cllr Wallace has said that him and Mrs Trew shared “banter together all the time and nothing untoward has happened over the years we’ve known each other”.
He added: “This has all been very upsetting.”
Cllr Wallace will now sit on the council as an independent and has this week launched an appeal against his expulsion from the party.
A Havering Council spokesman said: “As this incident did not happen on council business, this is not a matter for the council but rather an issue for the two parties concerned and the Conservative Party.
“We will never condone any ki