IN FEBRUARY, when it was revealed that Shawn M. Williams, a Republican member of Loudoun County’s Board of Supervisors, had a history of drunken driving and domestic violence, he immediately dropped his candidacy for the board chairmanship and, effectively, withdrew from local politics.
Now the former supervisor from the Broad Run district, evidently convinced that the cloud of disrepute has passed, has let it be known that he may revive his campaign for the county’s top job — this time as an independent candidate because the GOP has already picked its nominee.
Mr. Williams has the right to run for whatever he pleases. Voters in Loudoun have rights, too. Those include knowing a lot more about Mr. Williams’s transgressions than they do now — and a lot more than Mr. Williams has divulged.
For instance, g iven that Mr. Williams has admitted to multiple instances of drunken driving, voters deserve to know the following:
How many times was he arrested? How many times was he convicted? What was his blood-alcohol level in each of the incidents? Did any accidents result from his conduct? Any injuries? When were the offenses, and have any of them occurred since he was elected to the county board in 2011?
Then there are the domestic violence incidents, which include one, in 2006, in which Mr. Williams, who is 6 foot, 2 inches and weighed 200 pounds, beat up his then-girlfriend, who is 5 foot, 4 inches and weighed 110 pounds. In the course of that incident, which took place in Ocean City, and which left her with multiple injuries to her face and head, he also threw her into closet doors with such force that they broke, according to a police report.
When that report was made public in March, Mr. Williams, a corporate lawyer for Sprint, issued a contrite statement offering “no excuse” for his actions. However, he provided no details about other, more recent violent incidents that caused sheriff’s deputies to be summoned to his home, including a fight with a neighbor and “domestic incidents” with his wife.
When did the incidents with his wife and neighbor take place? Has Mr. Williams asked that the police reports be made public?
Mr. Williams was charged with first-degree assault for the incident in Ocean City; the charges were later dropped. No charges were filed in the subsequent abuse incidents. He says he has sought counseling and renewed his religious faith.
The absence of convictions hardly qualifies him for public office, let alone the county’s top elected job. Loudoun is one of the biggest, richest and fastest growing localities in Virginia. It needs public servants who are smart, hardworking — and worthy of elected office.