Ansonia town/city clerk asks for forgiveness after arrest
ANSONIA-Town/City Clerk Janet Vitarius Waugh apologized to city residents for her arrest early Sunday on a disorderly conduct charge and asked for their forgiveness.
“I shouldn’t have acted the way I did that’s not in my character,” Vitarius Waugh said Tuesday night. “I ask the city and its residents to forgive me.”
“This is a matter that impacted my personal life,” she continued. “It’s now over with and it won’t affect my duties with the city.”
Vitarius Waugh, 57, said the incident involved a 75-year-old man, who the police report identifies only as “S.H.” She said the man was living as a tenant in her Prospect Street home.
While Vitarius Waugh said she had a business relationship with the man, she denied being romantically involved with him.
She said she has been having difficulty getting him to move out which resulted in her “losing control.”
On Tuesday Acting Police Chief Andrew Cota said officers were dispatched four times to the home between Saturday evening and early Sunday morning. He said Vitarius Waugh wanted the “tenant” out and officers advised her about the eviction process. She also was warned after the third call that if they came out again she would be arrested.
Early Sunday morning the man told police Vitarius Waugh locked him out of his room leaving him unable to get his medication.
When police returned shortly before 4 a.m. Sunday for the fourth time, they charged Vitarius Waugh with disorderly conduct.
She appeared in Derby Superior Court Monday and was ordered to return on June 13. She is free on a $1,000 non-surety bond.
Disorderly conduct is a misdemeanor charge. In domestic disputes like this a judge usually allows a defendant to participate in a pre-trial diversion program and may include taking anger management classes. Upon successful completion the case is closed and the charges are wiped clean from a person’s record.
Vitarius Waugh is serving her second two-year term as the Town/City Clerk which pays about $77,000. She defeated former Town/City Beth Shortell Lynch in the past two elections.
As Town/City clerk Vitarius Waugh is responsible for maintaining city records, issuing various licenses, insuring boards and commission agendas are filed and minutes maintained and serving as the contact person when lawsuits are filed against the city and summonses are issued for city records and witnesses.
On Tuesday Mayor David Cassetti issued a statement calling upon Vitarius Waugh to resign.
“These are serious charges involving a public official whose conduct and actions should comport with her position,” Cassetti’s statement reads.
“Although I have limited authority as it pertains to elected officials,” he continued “I believe it is in the best interest of Ms. Vitarius Waugh and the residents of this city that she strongly consider resigning from her office so that her personal issues do not continue to detract from her public duties.”
Vitarius Waugh said Tuesday night she will not resign from her position and expects to seek re-election in the fall.
“I think I have been doing a good job as the clerk,” Vitarius Waugh said. “I have been able to obtain state grants to preserve our older books containing vital records both in bound copies and on microfilm. I volunteer at almost every city event and am part of the Adopt-A-Spot program.”
The Adopt-A-Spot program is an effort by the city to beautify certain areas particularly traffic islands. The adopters are asked to keep the spot clean of litter and weeds and maintain flower plantings there.
“The business relationship is over. The man is out of my house,” Vitarius Waugh said. “I hope the residents can forgive me and I can get
on with my life and my job.”