Friday, August 27, 2004

On home turf, prosecutor's all the talk

West-Siders weigh in on aftermath, effects of affair

By Cindi Andrews
Enquirer staff writer

Employee lawsuit: Allen coerced sex
On home turf, prosecutor's all the talk
Allen lawyer's statement
Text of lawsuit
Allen admits affair
Video: Allen's statement
Poll: Should he resign?
WESTWOOD - The news of Hamilton County Prosecutor Mike Allen's sexual relationship with a lawyer in his office was greeted with disgust, disappointment, disbelief - everything but disinterest - Thursday on his home turf.

"We've been going 50 miles an hour on that," said one patron lunching at Champions Grill and Bar in Westwood. "We know him."

It's not that Allen is a personal acquaintance of the Sayler Park Seniors, as the woman and her six lunch companions call themselves. It's that he's a fellow West-Sider. The prosecutor graduated from Elder High School, a Price Hill institution and the alma mater of a majority of Champions' owners.

But even though Allen is one of them, not all West-Siders are ready to let him off the hook.

"I think it's terrible, because he's got small children," said Rhonda Reidel, another of the Sayler Park Seniors. "What I don't understand is why a man would do that."

Reidel, whose grandson goes to Elder with Allen's son, said she voted for Allen in the past but wouldn't vote for him again. She won't have another choice; Allen is unopposed on the Nov. 2 ballot.

Another Champions diner, Mark Meyer of Bridgetown, went even further, saying Allen should resign. A boss should never have a relationship with an employee, he said, and the county's top lawyer should set a better example.

"I want (leaders) to have that moral high ground," Meyer said. "If I'm lying about that, what else am I lying about?"

Audrey Goettke was more appalled about the news coverage.

"I don't think it's anybody's business, myself," said Goettke, a Delhi Township resident. "There's lots more men than we know about that have done it."

Champions manager Nikki Betz was skeptical of claims the female assistant prosecutor outlined in a lawsuit filed in federal court Thursday, alleging Allen pressured her into the relationship.

"I just find it hard to believe that a woman was pressured to do that for four years," she said. "I don't see why it took her four years to say something."

Betz has never met Allen, but she's willing to give him the benefit of doubt.

"I think there's a lot more going on in the world that people should be worried about than what Mike Allen does in his love life," she said.


Employee lawsuit: Allen coerced sex
On home turf, prosecutor's all the talk
Office affairs are high-stakes gambles
Allen lawyer's statement
Mall accused of bias over tilted cap
Ohio pollution rated as high
Local teen drug use falls to 20-year low
Cleanup of barrel building may not start for months
6 more indicted in Tot Lot drug case
Helpers in awe of Charley's violence
Brent Spence, 'an invitation to disaster,' may get funds
Nothing's too humble to collect - even bricks
Is alleged highway shooter sane?
Public safety briefs

Newport cop stopped, driven home
N.Ky. couple face charges for leaving kids alone
Cameras to monitor dumping of animals
Ky. police told it's legal to name injured
Newport tax rate reduced
GOP candidates get exposure
Fletcher creates anti-drug office
Kentucky obituaries

District savors top-tier rating
School district bills Taft to stress funding problems

Young artists finding niche in Covington
Festival hits 39th year, but not without struggle
Butler Co. proposes task force on transit
Rec center plans revised
Neighbors briefs

Downs: Rugby club keeps contact the hard way
Good Things Happening

Murray Weiner, doctor, writer, pharmacologist