A former Puyallup city councilwoman came forward Tuesday night to say she had an encounter last year with fellow council member Rick Hansen that made her uncomfortable.
Nicole Martineau said she reported it verbally to the city manager at the time but chose not to make a more formal complaint.
Hansen is now mayor and was accused by a female city employee of two incidents of inappropriate contact in April.
Martineau brought up last year’s alleged interaction – in which she says Hansen put his hands on her shoulders and shook her back and forth at City Hall – during public comment at Tuesday’s City Council meeting.
Martineau recalled that Hansen was not angry but seemingly wanted to get a point across.
Earlier in Tuesday’s meeting, the council admonished Hansen in response to the complaint filed last spring by the city employee.
The employee reported that Hansen touched her on the shoulder and hip at City Hall in April and that she wanted him to “understand there are boundaries.”
Hansen since has voluntarily taken human resources training. He told the crowd Tuesday that there was no improper intent, but that he was sorry.
Martineau said Wednesday that she spoke at the meeting because she was disappointed with how the council handled the recent situation.
While she was on the council, she and Hansen fell on opposite sides of the divided group, and Hansen is friends with the man who defeated Martineau in a heated election race last fall.
But she said: “It’s not about Rick Hansen. It’s about the behavior and what I expect from my mayor.”
Hansen said Wednesday he didn’t recall the alleged interaction with Martineau and hopes to move on.
“We have a lot of city business to take care of,” he firstname.lastname@example.org