Estacada mayor confronted at City Council meeting
'Clackistani Allied Forces' member Dora Morgan's behavior documented by the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office
Estacada Mayor Becky Arnold has filed a report with the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office, claiming threatening remarks were made against her during a City Council meeting on March 26.
Estacada resident Dora Morgan, the woman accused of making those threats, says her words were misinterpreted.
Morgan's presence at the meeting was the result of statements made by Arnold in the March 21 edition of the Estacada News.
In the story, 'Community now has to vote on renewal,' Arnold accuses the supporters of urban renewal Measure 3-391 of going door to door with 'non-truths.'
As a supporter of Measure 3-391, Morgan was outraged at what she claims was a false accusation itself, saying that all of the materials they went door to door with came straight from City Hall.
After signing the speaking list under her own name, Morgan introduced herself as a speaker from the group that calls themselves the 'Clackistani Allied Forces.'
After explaining why she was speaking in front of the council, Morgan proceeded to say, 'On behalf of the Clackistani Allied Forces, we will accept your resignation. Lay down your arms … and walk away or face the dire consequences at the hands of the mainstream voters this fall, who just beat your measure by 77 percent.'
The call for resignation drew laughter from Arnold.
Morgan ended her presentation by saying, 'Unlike you mayor, I'll be a lady and walk away.'
For Arnold, the feeling of being threatened is nothing new around Morgan, who ran against Arnold for mayor in 2010.
'When I beat her in 2010, I beat her by close to 70 percent of the vote, so I don't know, I think it's personal, " Arnold said. "I think she hates me, and it wouldn't matter what I said.
'I think she crossed the line, and that a name is really strong in showing someone's intent, which in this case was to be intimidating and threatening by using 'allied forces' to allude to military forces,' she added.
Morgan, however, seems confused by the idea that her group's name has a threatening nature.
'It's a metaphor,' she explained. 'It has been used quite often here recently, and it has no military undertones to it.
'If they don't understand the metaphor, how on earth do they understand urban renewal?' she added.
While Arnold remembers personal threats being levied against her at the meeting, including threats made by Morgan to make her life a living hell, those threats don't appear in the city's video recording of the meeting.
'I absolutely did not say anything along the lines of making her life a living hell,' Morgan said. 'I would be stupid to do that. And I have no reason to.'
Morgan even explained that the resignation demand was directed at the entire council, not just the mayor.
'It really wasn't a personal threat,' Councilman Sean Drinkwine said. 'It's just a threat saying that if you don't stop spending money uselessly on things that they don't consider worthy, then we're going to take you out of office.'
Even if the threat wasn't directed specifically at her this time, however, Arnold claims that Morgan has confronted her outside of the City Council meeting before.
'Dora has disliked me since I became a city councilor, and the whole thing with her is that she switches targets,' Arnold said. 'A couple years back I went to leave a meeting and Dora and some people were there, and when I left, I couldn't get to my car because all of the people in Dora's group blocked me from getting to my car, screaming questions at me, and I was scared to death.'
According to the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office, none of the statements or actions made by Morgan at this most recent meeting were deemed criminal, but they have been documented as 'alarming.'
'This doesn't rise to a criminal level and there were no charges or arrests,' Lt. James Rhodes said. 'We did document it, and if it's a pattern that goes on, it may rise to a criminal level.'
While Morgan, who has lived in Estacada for 24 years, claims everything has been taken out of context and exaggerated recently, she said this won't prevent her from trying her best to help the city of Estacada.
'In the last 10 years, the community has gone downhill, and I understand it's the economy, but it also has to do with leadership,' she said. 'If I didn't care, I'd be sitting on the couch like the rest of them being apathetic.
'They don't want to deal with the issues, they want to attack the messenger.'